Tattoo percentage: 33% (5 players with tattoos, 10 without)
The Hornets saw their tattoo percentage increase slightly over last year.
Players with tattoos:
In June 2012, Aminu announced via his tumblr account that he plans to add tattoos in the different countries he visits, a sort of commemoration of his travels. He goes on to explain that he’s already begun this process in a way, having gotten tattoos in Atlanta (his hometown), Los Angeles (where he played on the Clippers), and New Orleans (where he currently plays).
Amundson’s sole tattoo was described in a 2009 Phoenix New Times article about tattoos on the Suns. That Phoenix team included Shaq, STAT, and Matt Barnes, so the article is mostly given over to their work, but buried in the text is this heartbreaking description of Amundson’s tattoo: “It’s on the right side of his chest and has the words “R.I.P. 34” surrounded by flames. He got the tattoo to commemorate the life of his best friend, Billy Feeney, a teammate at Monarch High School in Louisville, Colorado, and a player for the University of New Mexico Lobos. Feeney hanged himself in August 2003. Amundson doubts he’ll get another tattoo.”
Roger Mason Jr.
In 2007, Mason covered his left arm in a meticulous, richly-symbolic tribute to his father. “There’s references from five different centuries and three or four different genres of art,” his tattoo artist, Grant Cobb explained to the Washington Post. “It was something that kind of needed some work, but it means a lot to him, it was real personal….It was really cool to be able to do something like that for him.” Or, in the words of Mason’s then-teammate, DeShawn Stevenson, “that’s blazin’.” Mason himself feels indifferent to the praise: “”Everybody loves it who sees it, but the meaning is what’s important. That’s why I got it.”
Rivers has “M.O.A.M.” tattooed on his left wrist, an acronym for “Man On A Mission”; “G.F.B.” on his right wrist, which stands for “God, Family, Basketball”; and the words “Dedicated” and “Determined” tattooed on the inside of his fingers. In this interview, he talks through each of them and mentions that he likes to keep his arms clean of tattoos.
Thomas majored in visual arts while at Duke, using his talents to create posters for each of his teammates. According to an ESPN report, he also designed the tattoo on his right bicep, an elaborate portrait of New Jersey wearing a crown.
Players without tattoos:
Tattoo percentage: 60% (9 players with tattoos, 6 without)
So glad the Heat picked up Eddy Curry this year so I could share that quote from his tattoo video. With Mike Bibby and Eddie House off their roster, the Heat have a lower tattoo percentage than last year, but their core of tattooed players remains surprisingly similar, with Bosh and Chalmers adding new designs in the off season.
Players with tattoos:
One year, my sister and I celebrated her birthday by getting floor seats for the Knicks/Cavs game. It ended up being the first time LeBron dropped 50 on the Knicks. It was a tough game for Curry, and we sat among a bunch of longtime season ticket holders who were relentless, pointing out how long it took him to get from one end of the court to the other and booing every time he touched the ball. But I have to say, dude is kind of a charmer. In this video interview, he talks through his tattoos with a lot of smiles and a few jokes, including this deadpan: “”I was sixteen when I got my first tattoo. It was somebody’s name. So let’s talk about my second tattoo.”“
Haslem, born and raised in Miami, loves Florida. Enough that he left $14 million on the table to re-sign with the Heat rather than go to Dallas or Denver. Enough that he got a map of the state tattooed on his back.
A 1996 Sports Illustrated profile reported that Howard has two tattoos: his grandmother’s name tattooed over his heart, and “Dr. J”, a tribute to his childhood idol Julius Erving, tattooed on his arm.
Turiaf has some great tattoos including a lion’s head and the letters “N L F” for “Never Lose Faith,” but when asked to describe his tattoos in this video, he goes straight to the Chinese character on his neck: “”Well I have the first one right here on my neck and it means family because I’m a big family guy.”
Players without tattoos:
2011-12 NBA overall tattoo percentage: 55% [details]
2010-11 NBA overall tattoo percentage: 53% [details]
A player-by-player, team-by-team guide to tattoos in the NBA. It is not an attempt to document every tattoo of every player–rather it is an attempt to provide a series of tools for sorting overall tattoo statistics in the NBA alongside glimpses into tattoo trends. Click on any team name below for player details of that team:
Hawks - Celtics - Nets - Bobcats - Bulls - Cavaliers
Mavericks - Nuggets - Pistons - Warriors - Rockets - Pacers
Clippers - Lakers - Grizzlies - Heat - Bucks - Timberwolves
Hornets - Knicks - Thunder - Magic - Sixers - Suns
Trail Blazers - Kings - Spurs - Raptors - Jazz - Wizards
Click HERE for a complete list of NBA players discussed on this blog.
Disclaimer: This info is collected completely anecdotally, mostly by watching games, but also through study of photos, interviews, and player profiles. It’s very likely that tattoos have gone unobserved or remain hidden, especially on non-superstar players. Every effort has been made to present the best possible information, but statistics should not be considered definitive. Please use Ask Me to share any relevant information.