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13 Weird NBA Tattoos

by: Esteban On  Tuesday, January 31, 2012

weird nba tattoos

Remember when NBA players were all clean-cut, nerdy-looking guys? Yeah, me neither. But I’ve seen photos, and they’re pretty hilarious—partly just because the dudes look silly in their own right, and partly because they stand in such stark contrast with the inked-up guys that play in the league today.

Yes, it has been estimated by top sports economists that the average NBA player spends 70-80% of his salary on tattoos.

Okay fine, I just made that figure up. But though the numbers may be incorrect, the sentiment is true: basketball players are addicted to tattoos. And while some of them are pretty awesome, there are still a lot that are pretty weird.

Since I happen to like weird stuff, let’s have a gander at some of the weirdest tattoos in the NBA today. They’re not necessarily bad (though they may be), but they’re all a little questionable.


13. Kinda Wordy

Andre-brown psalm tattoo

Hey, Andre Brown. I’ve got nothing against the Psalms. They’re nice. But I am against tattooing them on your leg. For one, it’s just too hard to read—especially while a guy is playing basketball. And also, it looks dumb, too. Why not just tattoo “Psalm 27″ on your leg. It’s shorter, and then people can just go and Google it.

12. Fierce Dragon, Goofy Elf

carlos delfino tattoo

“Okay, so right here, I want this field dragon with fangs and talons and pointy wings that looks like it’ll tear you to pieces. Then, right here below the dragon, I’d like this goofy little smurf guy playing leap-frog with a basketball. Cool?” -Carlos Delfino of the Bucs, giving instructions to his tattoo artist

11. Medieval Knight...on a bed of skulls?

nikola pekovic medieval knight tattoo

The T-Wolves’ Nikola Pekovic wanted a medieval knight on his arm, but he knew that wouldn’t be very cool. So he decided to have the knight stand on a bed of skulls.

Sadly, it’s still not cool. Just weird. (Weren’t knights supposed to be chivalrous?)

10. Did his kid draw that?

richard-jefferson tattoo

Richard Jefferson loves his kids so much that he let them draw his “RJ” tattoo.

Okay, I just made that up. I don’t even know if RJ has kids. But, looking at that tattoo, it’s believable isn’t it?

9. Don't feed the mogwi after midnight

marcin gorfat arm tattoo

Hey Marcin Gortat, is that a gremlin in a Santa outfit clawing its way out of your shoulder?

If so, wtf?

If not, wtf?

8. The Blob

deron williams wtf tattoo

Earlier in his career, Deron Williams had a reasonably-sized panther tattoo on his right arm. At some point, he decided to take it up a notch and replace that panther with a bigger one. Sadly, the new tattoo doesn’t look very much like a panther from afar. Instead it’s just this giant black blotch on his arm.

You would think a guy making the 13th highest salary in the league could afford some better ink.

7. Whose world is it?

jermaine oneal jesus tattoo

I’m not a bible scholar or anything, but even I find Jermaine O’Neal’s tattoos a little ironic. I mean, there is a nice image of Jesus wearing the crown of thorns. And right above Jesus is a tattoo of O’Neal himself grasping a globe with the words, “The World is Mine.”

So take that, Jesus.

6. The Family Tree

Monta ellis family tree tattoo

I was kind of divided on whether I thought this tattoo was cool or weird. Then I said, hey, why does it have to be one or the other? Why can’t it be cool and weird?

In any case, this is Monta Ellis from the Golden State Warriors. As you can see, he’s got a sweet tree tattooed on his torso. Also, a baby’s face—that’s the weird part for me.

5. Scrappy-Doo? Really?

brad miller scrappy-doo tattoo

Brad Miller of the T-Wolves made a very poor decision when he walked into that tattoo parlor and said, “give me a Scrappy-Doo, right here.” A very, very poor decision.

4. Praying hands holding a glock

stephen jackson praying hands gun tattoo

The Bucs Stephen Jackson couldn’t decide whether he wanted to go religious or gangster with his chest/stomach tattoo. Then he realized: hell, I’m rich and can do anything I want, so why not do both?

Thus we have this beauty—a pair of praying hands…holding a handgun. Classy.

3. Honest Abe

DeShawn Stevenson of the Nets got an Abe Lincoln tattoo on his neck because someone (Gilbert Arenas) stole his idea of getting Martin Luther King, and Abe was the next best choice—you know, because he freed the slaves. (He really didn’t, technically, but let’s leave that historical lesson for another day.)

But why on the neck, and why the 5s on either side? Well, why not the neck? And the 5s are there because people couldn’t tell that it was Abraham Lincoln, so he put the 5s from the $5 bill to clarify. (Yeah, that really helps DeShawn, thanks.)

2. World of Warcraft Tat

andrei kirilenko world of warcraft tattoo

This former Utah Jazz forward really likes the video game, World of Warcraft. So he got this tattoo.

But you know what? I really like Mario Kart, but you don’t see me getting a giant tattoo of Luigi on my back, do you?

Also, have you ever seen the movie Red Dragon? Ralph Fiennes is a serial killer, and he has a tattoo that reminds me of Kirilenko’s. I would say that is a bad association.

1. Suicide Bong

marquis daniels suicide tattoo

The Celtics’ Marquis Daniels has a number of notable tattoos, but this one takes the cake. I know guys like to get “inspirational” stuff plastered on their arms to remind them to play hard and whatnot, but is a picture of a guy blowing his brains out really the best way to convey the idea that “only the strong survive”?

You know what, I’m going to just go ahead and answer my rhetorical question: no, it’s not the best way.

So congrats, Marquis, you have the weirdest tattoo in the NBA.