Driven to Distraction
Poor Tony Romo. He's no lucky dog, even with a girlfriend like Jessica Simpson.
The Dallas Cowboys quarterback was eliminated from the NFL playoffs last Sunday after losing in an upset to the New York Giants. Jessica wasn't there -- just a lookalike planted by the New York Post -- but that couldn't save Romo and "America's Team" from the agony of defeat and more fury over the alleged "Jessica Jinx."
Romo's critics had been piling the blame since the quarterback suffered his worst game two weeks earlier when the Hollywood starlet showed up to cheer him on. Who knows if Romo found any comfort in Jessica's arms after Sunday's loss, even in the lovely warm confines Los Cabos, Mexico. Dallas Cowboy fans sure didn't.
Was the timing simply coincidental? Is there really any validity to the idea that a girlfriend watching from the wings can adversely affect an athlete's game?
For answers, WWE.com looks to Chuck Palumbo, Kenny Dykstra and Santino Marella. These three Superstars prominently parade their "special lady friends" in and around the ring before their matches. And just how has that worked out for them so far?
In a word: Miserably. Here's a look:
On the Skids
Ever since Diva Michelle McCool began warming the back end of Palumbo's motorcycle seat, he has found himself in a potential career-threatening skid. The Easy Rider has dropped four matches in a row to a man nearly half his size, Jamie Noble, and thrown a series of tantrums aimed at Michelle. But is Michelle really to blame for Palumbo's bad luck or should he be looking at himself in the mirror?
Future Hall of Shamer?
Palumbo's fellow SmackDown Superstar Kenny Dykstra has endured an equally rough ride. The self-proclaimed "future Hall-of-Famer" has been unable to make much of a case for himself since he and Victoria started their relationship months ago. Even with support from his Diva girlfriend, the former World Tag Team Champion's win-loss record has been sketchy at best, despite recent strong outings against Rey Mysterio and CM Punk. But give Dykstra credit -- he believes in himself and never backs away from a challenge.
Shaddup ‘a you pie hole!
Italian Stallion Santino Marella hasn't fared much better. With his "girlfriend" Maria looking on, the former Intercontinental Champion has been humiliated in recent months by Superstars such as "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, Chris Jericho and Rob Van Dam. But has Marella been a victim of the charms of his lovely lady friend or his own big mouth?
The Case for Lady Luck
Still, despite Palumbo, Dykstra and Marella's recent bad luck, a number of Superstars have seen their careers soar with Lady Luck in their corner.
Arguably, legendary former WWE Champion Randy "Macho Man" Savage achieved the greatest success of his career with the lovely Ms. Elizabeth by his side. Sunny guided several tag teams, including the Bodydonnas, Smokin' Gunns and The Godwinns, through championship reigns. Marlena's shapely curves and subtle cunning added to Goldust's mystique. And Lita -- and most recently, SmackDown GM Vickie Guerrero -- have been the evil women behind an equally evil, but hugely successful, Edge and his WWE and World Heavyweight Championship reigns.
Whether or not a "McCool Collapse," a "Victoria Vex" or a "Maria Meltdown" are real phenomena or simply convenient excuses for Superstars suffering slumps remains to be seen. But one thing is impossible to argue: After a losing effort, it doesn't hurt finding comfort in the arms of a Diva.