Playing a game professionally is no easy task. From practice to game day, the exercise can be as stressful on the mind as it is on the body. With all this pressure to perform, it’s little surprise that many top athletes take their time off to enjoy games which are a little more relaxing than challenging.

From lotto to Nintendo, here are some of our favorite athletes who are also big gamers.

Matt Kemp – The Lottery

Becoming an enormous baseball star is like winning a lottery in itself. Of course, dedication and constant hard work play a massive part, but few of us could ever achieve this level without the fortune of good genetics.

As a star outfielder for the New York Mets, Kemp has already made the sort of bank which we all dream of. Having signed a $160 million dollar contract in 2011, Kemp shared his love for Mega Millions after the jackpot hit the $650 million mark.

He might not have won, but as Carl Lewis said in this list of good motivating quotes by athletes “It’s all about the journey, not the outcome.”

Xavier Woods – Street Fighter

Acting as one of the most popular figures in modern WWE, Xavier Woods knows how to work a crowd. Not content to keep his interests in the ring, Woods also counts among his passions music and video games.

As a dedicated gamer, he hosts his own YouTube channel called UpUpDownDown, where he covers a wide range of games like Mario, Mortal Kombat, and Gears of War.

Among his most loved games is Street Fighter, where he hosted a hilarious match against Kofi Kingston where the loser would have to act as the other’s luggage caddy.


Pepe – Destiny

Best known for his work at Real Madrid, Pepe counts himself among one of the many millions of players who enjoy Bungie’s online series, Destiny.  Despite being a game mostly focused on fighting the computer, Pepe’s competitive spirit drew him towards the player on player combat.

The real kicker is that he’s better than we are at the game, which doesn’t seem fair for somebody already so talented in soccer.

Demetrious Johnson – PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds

As flyweight champion in the UFC, Demetrious Johnson is no stranger to quick reflexes and rapid action. Obviously a man who values excitement, Johnson’s taste in video games tends towards larger scale battles as in PUBG, where the tension ramps up as the players slowly drop out.

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As one of the most dedicated gamers out there, Johnson has considered finding a career as a streamer after his UFC work dies down. If the quality of his videos are anything to go by, he has another promising path to look forward to.


So who are your favorite pro athlete gamers, and what do they enjoy playing the most? More importantly, do you think you could beat them if you crossed paths on the virtual battlefield? At least when it comes to the lottery, we fancy our chances to perform at their level.