Hayden Panettiere couldn't escape being romantically linked to NFL player. Less than a week after the Claire Bennet of "Heroes" shot down rumor she is romancing New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez, Us Weekly reported she is actually dating Scotty McKnight, another Jets player who is Mark's childhood friend.
Back on Memorial Day (May 30), the former girlfriend of Wladimir Klitschko sparked speculation she might be more than friends with Mark after they were spotted together outside an In-N-Out Burger in Laguna Hills, California. While eyewitness said, "They seemed very close and very happy," a source close to the 21-year-old actress insisted, "They are just friends."
Newly-single Hayden herself has set the record straight when met at the Vans Custom Culture Event in New York City on June 2. To Us Weekly, she said, "I swear I'm not dating him at all. Honestly. I'm a huge Jets fan and became very good friends with him and his buddies. ... I've always been that girl who has a lot of dude friends."
The "Scream 4" actress further acknowledged, "Every person that I stand next to in this industry is a guy I'm going to be linked to - that's just inevitably the way it goes." She added, "When it's a long-term friendship like that, sometimes it starts getting a little bit frustrating for certain people. You don't want to put fuel into the fire but you don't want to stop living your life and doing what you want to do."