NBA players get the chance to perform on a global platform on a nightly basis. Because of this incredible exposure, they become household names across the world, achieving massive fame through the league.
One of the biggest facets of the NBA is nicknames. Players often earn nicknames through their incredible play, a name that acknowledges a particular facet of their game or their mentality in a clever way.
Shaquille O'Neal had the most nicknames, with Superman and Diesel being the most widely used nicknames. Both names perfectly encapsulated just how dominant Shaq was during the prime of his career, getting anything he wanted if he put his mind to it.
Kobe Bryant's nickname was the 'Black Mamba', another perfect example of a nickname perfectly capturing a player's trait. Much like the Mamba snake, Kobe could strike at any time with incredible venom and ferocity, leaving his opponents dazed and confused.
But what about other players who don't go by their real names? There are players in the NBA who choose to use a different name, as compared to their given names. These are usually derived from some aspect of their name, mostly middle names.
Several NBA players in the league today choose to go by a different name, that is mistaken to be their legal, given name. Players like PJ Tucker, Khris Middleton, Bam Adebayo, among others, don't go by their real names in the league.
The Real Names Of NBA Players We Don't Hear Too Often
Bam Adebayo: Edrice Adebayo
CJ McCollum: Christian McCollum
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander: Shaivonte Gilgeous-Alexander
PJ Tucker: Anthony Tucker
TJ Warren: Anthony Warren
Khris Middleton: James Khristian Middleton
Jamal Crawford: Aaron Jamal Crawford
NBA fans reacted to these real names in hilarious fashion. Most fans were confused about how these players derived the names they go by, as they held little similarity with their actual given names.
But sometimes, players in the NBA choose not to go by their given name and adopt a nickname which they are known by. The most obvious example of this is Earvin Johnson, who is better known around the rest of the world as Magic Johnson.
Another big example that comes up often is Steph Curry. Curry's real name is Wardell Stephen Curry, but he chooses to go by Stephen Curry instead. So this is by no means a new phenomenon. But it was interesting to see some lesser-known real names of star players in the NBA.