The Krossover: A Comprehensive History of the Kardashians and the NBA

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Khloé Kardashian and the Cavaliers’ Tristan Thompson are about to welcome their first child! The loved-up couple, who were introduced by Brandon Jennings in 2016, confirmed the pregnancy this past December after months of speculation. The Kardashian-Thompson coupling–well, trio now–represents the most recent Krossover between the Kardashian-Jenner family and the NBA. Let’s take a walk down memory lane and revisit some of the good, bad, and just plain ugly pairings between these two cultural giants.

Kourtney Kardashian & Richard Jefferson

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Well, they didn’t actually date. But this is really where it all started. Long, long ago, in a universe where the Kardashian kids were still expected to pursue a college education, Kourtney attended (and graduated from!) the University of Arizona. Her time there overlapped with NBA champion and part-time podcaster Richard Jefferson’s stint with the Wildcats. The two had mutual friends; RJ revealed on an episode of Road Trippin’: Richard vs. Channing that back then, “she was just Kourtney”. Weirdly enough, his Cavs teammate Tristan would start dating Kourtney’s little sister fifteen years later.


Khloé Kardashian & Rashad McCants

Khloé Kardashian and ex Rashad McCants

Chris Connor/WENN

Former NCAA champion and NBA first-round draft pick Rashad McCants dated Khloé prior to her marriage to Lamar Odom. McCants, who has a history of spilling tea, claimed all the way back in 2009 that parts of the relationship were staged and exaggerated for plot’s sake on Kourtney and Khloé Take Miami. While that much is certainly believable, McCants never professionally bounced back from this highly-publicized piece of his personal life. A month after breaking it off with Khloé, Rashad was traded from the Timberwolves and would never again be able to keep a consistent NBA job. In 2017, McCants reemerged, alleging that his short stint as a Kardashian accessory is precisely the reason why he was “blackballed” by the league. McCants never became the “$60-70 million [NBA] player” he believed himself to be, but he would become the BIG3’s inaugural #1 overall pick (later, he’d hit the step-back game-winner for Trilogy in the very first BIG3 championship). Rashad McCants was the first and likely most debilitated victim of the fabled Kardashian Curse. We’re glad he’s recovered.


Kim Kardashian & Kris Humphries

Kim Kardashian and ex Kris Humphries

WENN


The infamous 72-day marriage came only 90 days after the Kris popped the question. And even though Kim insisted in a roundabout way to Oprah’s face that she wouldn’t “marry to get ratings”, we still must wonder. Kris himself, who’d sought an annulment instead of divorce, alleged that the marriage was fraudulent. Humphries was introduced during the season 6 premiere of Keeping Up, and Kim’s family–particularly and ironically Khloé–were not entirely thrilled with how Kim was rebounding from Reggie Bush. Khloé had herself an argument: it was pretty clear that the chemistry wasn’t there. The dollars were, though. The two-night wedding special, “Kim’s Fairytale Wedding”, was E! network’s “most-watched event to date.” And the Kourtney and Kim Take New York season 2 finale when Kim comes to the conclusion to file for divorce? Third-most viewers for an E! telecast to date. Kris was blindsided and “devastated” by the divorce, and his NBA career never quite recovered. Humphries is riding the NBA waives, and according to the divorce settlement, didn’t earn a dime from the entire fiasco. #Cursed

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Khloé Kardashian & Lamar Odom

Khloé Kardashian and ex Lamar Odom

WENN


A whirlwind. A head-scratcher. A dramatic chronicle indeed. Khloé and Lamar married in September 2009, a month after meeting at the birthday party of the man formerly known as Ron Artest. Kardashian and Odom were together long enough to yield 20 episodes of a Keeping Up spinoff, Khloé & Lamar, which in hindsight was more of a coming-out party for Rob Kardashian, who lived on their couch. While it was occasionally believable that Koko and “Lam Lam” were in love to some degree–unlike Kim and Kris who clearly did not know a thing about each other–the prophecy was fulfilled: Khloé filed for divorce in December 2013. Two years later, after Lamar was found unconscious following an overdose and hospitalized in critical condition, Khloé called off the divorce in order to support and make medical decisions for him. Lamar would recover, and the divorce would be finalized in December 2016.


Khloé Kardashian & James Harden

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Post-Lamar (kind of?) and pre-Tristan, there was The Beard. And he’d love for us to forget it entirely. James Harden and Khloé became involved in July 2015, and Harden’s made it clear that it was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad mistake. 2015 ended up being “the worst year of his life”. Combine the complimentary media circus that comes with dating a Kardashian, Khloé’s occupation with Lamar Odom (Odom’s health crisis would emerge months into the Harden-Kardashian relationship), and his disastrous workplace relationship with then-Rockets teammate Dwight Howard, and you can see Harden’s point. In hindsight, it’s hard to remember anything about the relationship before the predestined fallout. Khloé’s obviously moved on, and James has totally recovered from both the Kardashian Curse and Lil B’s curse. So let’s leave it all in the past.

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Kendall Jenner & Chandler Parsons

Chandler Parsons

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Kendall moved from Harry Styles (allegedly) to… Chandler Parsons? In 2014, it was reported that Parsons and Jenner “were chatting and flirting” while eating tuna on a group date. Parsons insisted it was nothing. The two have been spotted out together a handful of times since, reigniting rumors between December 2016 and January 2017 while Parsons was maybe supposed to be dating Hailey Baldwin and Kendall was maybe supposed to be dating Jordan Clarkson or Jordan and Hailey were maybe supposed to be dating each other. Maybe the all of the PR assistants were on vacation.


Kendall Jenner & the Baby Lakers

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D’Angelo Russell fell first into the trap. And if he warned his teammates, Jordan Clarkson wasn’t listening. In D’Angelo’s defense, he and Kendall were “in the early stages of a relationship” for a few days of a slow news week in November 2015. They were probably just friends–if that–considering Kendall loves sitting courtside for the Lakers (and sometimes the Clippers).
In July 2016, E! reported that Jenner and Clarkson had spent the 4th of July together and were officially “casually dating“. The two were initially linked the previous spring after eating food together and not much else. By November, the public had forgotten about this sizzling relationship, so somebody’s PR assistant hired a photographer to go shopping with them. Before long, Kendall was allegedly dating Chandler Parsons again (and/or his girlfriend Hailey Baldwin). But there’s still hope for Kordan! Clarkson is playing for the Cavs now, with Khloé’s boyfriend Tristan. Khloé loves living in Kleveland. Maybe she can convince Kendall to give Jordan another shot.

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Kourtney Kardashian & Kevin Durant

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Just kidding. But one of Tristan Thompson’s close friends, who appears to be a mutual friend with Kevin Durant, communicated on a recent episode of Keeping Up that KD thinks Kourtney is “cute”. Kourtney is cute, partly because she is the least dramatic of the sisters. Kevin was probably just making an observation. Besides, he still has relationship issues to work out with Russell Westbrook. Kourtney didn’t seem interested or impressed at the time, and has clearly moved on.


Kendall Jenner & Blake Griffin

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In August 2017, Kendall was apparently going steady with A$AP Rocky. But we’ve learned from the Chandler Parsons/Jordan Clarkson saga: the elder Jenner sister is in high demand, and she’s sometimes generous enough to entertain two public boyfriends simultaneously. Blake Griffin, of all people, was next up (and somehow, Parsons and Hailey Baldwin were again involved). How could Griffin–coming off an injury which sealed yet another playoff disappointment by the Clippers and Chris Paul’s decision to leave L.A. for Houston–further jeopardize his rather unlucky NBA career by stepping out with one of… them? Hadn’t he learned from the Hardens and Humphries before him? It felt as if we were getting a new set of paparazzi photos every day; the Kardashian Curse was imminent. To be fair to Blake, he started off 2017-18 statistically improved. But then he got hurt, again, and was later shipped out to Detroit in arguably the most bizarre trade sequence in recent NBA history. Whether it was a dose of Kardashian Karma or not, we can’t know for sure. But we had to wonder: could Kendall commit to Michigan in the middle of winter? Apparently not. By February, Blake and Kendall were allegedly on the rocks (though in a recent Vogue cover story, Kendall, quelling gay rumors, is purported to be in Detroit on the day after Valentine’s “visiting a friend”). Wherever we’re at in this relationship, the only thing confirmable is that it’s exhausting.

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