Before pro-contracts, sponsorship deals or even college basketball, the thing you need more than anything to make it big in the NBA is a great nickname, because how else will anyone know you’re good? Unsurprisingly then, the NBA is now littered with some pretty out there player nicknames (with many NBA legends having more than one), so this quiz isn’t as easy as you might think. In fact, NBA players themselves struggled to get some.
Check out the video above to see whether you’ve got what it takes to beat an NBA player…at er, well, our, own game.
NBA Nicknames Have some weird Origin stories
Some of the greatest nicknames have no obvious link to the player and the stranger the origin story the better. Dennis Rodman was called ‘The Worm’ not because of the way he moved on the court but how he moved while playing computer games. As a kid he used to squirm while playing arcade games, his friends found this hilarious and gave him the apt nickname ‘The Worm’.
Larry Johnson got a paycheque and a nickname in the same breath when he dressed up as his ‘Grandmama’ for a Converse advert. A great player and two-time All-Star clearly was a good sport with humour as well.
Lafayette Lever standing at a skinny 6 ft 3 in didn’t get the nickname Fat because it was ironic or because of the ‘phat’ career he had. He got it before he started sinking triple-doubles, his younger brother had trouble pronouncing Lafayette so just went with ‘Fat’ instead.
In honour of the more creative nicknames in the NBA here’s a small list of some of the most awesome.
Shawn Kemp –The Reignman
Allen Iverson –The Answer
Karl Malone –The Mailman
Charles Barkley –Round Mound of Rebound
Gary Payton –The Glove
Caron Butler – Tuff Juice
Vinnie Johnson –The Microwave
Rafer Alston –Skip to my Lou
David Lee – Da White Howard
Luke Ridnour –Frodo
Darko Milicic –Human Victory Cigar
Marvin Webster –The Human Eraser