MOST sports stars have moments in their career they would like to have over again, whether it be a split-second decision they made in the heat of the moment, an ill-considered play call or just a lack of preparation.
As far as reading about these mistakes though, you can be forgiven for taking at least a small slither of pleasure from the best-of-the-best having an off day and proving they are human.
As 2015 comes to a close, here is our list of the five biggest stars who had their off moments throughout the year that was.
Former heavyweight boxing champion Wladimir Klitschko
After a dominant reign at the top which saw him box for over nine years without defeat, it seemed like Wladimir Klitschko would walk all over Englishman Tyson Fury towards another retention of his heavyweight crown.
It was not to be though as Fury shocked the world on his way to dethroning the long-time champ on a points decision.
The brash Fury looked as if his bark would be worse than his bite, but he served it up to the Russian, who ultimately fell to his much younger opponent.
”The speed was missing. Reach played a big role. I tried, but it didn’t work,” Klitschko said after the fight.
”I saw my face in the mirror, and it didn’t look so nice. But that’s boxing.”
It was the biggest shock in 2015 and if Klitschko wants to retake the throne he will need to find something special to defeat Fury.
Melbourne Cup competitor Fame Game
The Japanese stayer went into the world’s richest staying race as one of the shortest priced favourites ever to take to the famous Flemington track.
After a day of racing that saw a soggy patch of the track that bogged horses down that attempted to swoop down the outside, the Japanese import was left with no other option coming into the home straight and subsequently failed to make up the required ground.
Prince of Penzance took out the big race at triple figure odds with Fame Game failing to gain a placing.
Kevin Love – Cleveland Cavaliers
Along with LeBron James, former Timberwolf Kevin Love was supposed to be a the catalyst that propelled the Cavaliers to the NBA title.
However, things did not quite go as planned in Ohio.
In his first season with the Cavaliers, Love was constantly spoken about as a free agent departure at the conclusion of the season; with LeBron James subversively questioning teammate’s dedication.
To compound this, Love’s statistics were well down on the productivity he achieved in Minnesota; with his total points almost halved, total assists down almost 150 and his rebounds sliced nearly in half.
Despite this the Cavs still made the finals, but in a cruel twist of fate for Love, he missed the series through injury.
Love recommitted to Cleveland in the off-season, and the Cavs will be hoping he can recapture some of his very best form en route to another finals campaign.
Russell Wilson – Seattle Seahawks
It should have been so easy for the Seahawks to win Superbowl 49.
With the Seahawks within 10 yards of the end zone and trailing by less than a touchdown, all Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson had to do was hand the ball off to his battering ram running back Marshawn Lynch.
Instead Wilson elected to throw the ball in one of the most ill-conceived final possession players in Superbowl history.
The Patriots were able to pick the ball off in the end zone and hold on to their slender lead to record one of their finest ever Superbowl wins.
The desire to atone in 2016 will burn deep in Wilson throughout the new season, with his decision to pass and not hand off one of the most talked about sporting moments of the year.
Ronda Rousey – Former UFC Bantamweight champion
As far as formalities go, Ronda Rousey keeping her undefeated streak alive at UFC 193 loomed as one of the easiest fights to pick on the card.
Rousey’s opponent Holly Holm was not buying into the hype.
Holm not only became just the second fighter in UFC history to enter the second round against Rousey, but she was the woman that ended her reign as the Bantamweight champion.
If you want to know why this loss hurts so much to Rousey, you only have to read the quote prior to the fight.
“I want to be one of the most dominant fighters who’ve ever lived and retire undefeated.
“It’s such a rarity. There’s been so many dominant fighters that aspired to that but didn’t get there. That’s what the final objective is.”
As fair as athletes that wished 2015 went differently, Rousey would have to be somewhere near the top.
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