The National Basketball Association contains perhaps the most tattooed players of any professional sport and the 10 best NBA basketball player tattoos represent the cream of the crop. From the personal, to political, to just plain silly, these 10 NBA player tattoos give fans, and sometimes sponsors, a quick look into their lives.
- Gilbert Arenas' change we believe in. As a supporter of the 44th President of the United States, Gilbert Arenas tattooed a variation of Barack Obama's campaign slogan "change we can believe in" on his left fingers. The Washington Wizards guard showed off the tattoo and many others in a 2010 PETA campaign titled "ink not mink."
- Carlos Boozer's grizzly bear. Like many NBA players with the best tattoos, Carlos Boozer pays tribute to where he came from with a fierce tattoo of a grizzly bear on his left arm. The Olympic gold medalist and all-star forward was raised in Alaska, which is also represented on his right arm with an image of Mount Juneau.
- Marquis Daniels' Florida. Born and raised in the Sunshine State, Marquis Daniels honors his home state of Florida with a giant tattoo on his back. While Daniels' Florida tattoo makes the list of 10 best NBA player tattoos, the Chinese characters on his left forearm are perhaps the worst around, translating to "healthy woman house" in English.
- Marcin Gortat's Michael Jordan Paying tribute to his basketball idol, Marcin Gortat inked Michael Jordan's Nike logo on his lower right leg. The Orlando Magic forward came under fire for that exact tattoo in 2009 however when his sponsor, Reebok, objected to the ink.
- Richard Hamilton's RIP basketball. Showing his devotion to the game, Detroit Pistons captain Richard "Rip" Hamilton's left arm features a gravestone with a basketball on it. The star explained the ink by noting, "basketball for life, basketball till I die."
- LeBron James' chosen 1. In one of his first tattoos, NBA superstar LeBron James added the large message "chosen 1" across his back while still in high school after Sports Illustrated gave him the nickname. King James added more ink as his career flourished, including a "Prince James" for his first son.
- Acie Law's blessed. The standout at Texas A&M University must have been feeling quite blessed with his life when he had the word tattooed on his back. A little divine intervention could be part of his success as the Chicago Bulls guard also has the words "lord's favorite" on his right arm.
- Kenyon Martin's lips. Showing his lady some love, Kenyon Martin of the Denver Nuggets inked a pair of bright red lips just below his right ear. The lips happen to be a perfect replica of those belonging to his hip hop girlfriend Trina.
- Shaquille O'Neal's Superman. While a big Superman tattoo was one way for Shaquille O'Neal to display one of his many nicknames, the "Man of Steel" took the theme to the next level, decorating an Orlando, Florida, in Superman gear.
- DeShawn Stevenson's sewn-on jersey. If perhaps DeShawn Stevenson of the Dallas Mavericks ever find himself without a fresh jersey to wear, he can simply remove his shirt to reveal a large number two and his last name tattooed on his back. While far from the best NBA player tattoo, it is perhaps one of the most useful if needed.
What Others Are Reading Right Now.
Acting, comedy and strong spirits converge in Speakeasy. When host Paul F. Tompkins interviews entertainers—Key and Peele, Alison Brie, Rob Delaney, Zach Galifianakis—about all sor …
10 Things Women Expect Men to Know How To Do
To make ladies swoon or at least not cringe, you’d better be able to handle the following…
Speakeasy: Jonathan Banks
The Emmy-nominated Breaking Bad star talks Beverly Hills Cop, Wiseguy, sitcom work and his new flick with Danny Trejo, Bullet. Oh yeah, a few Mike Ehrma …