People get tattoos for a lot of different reasons. Maybe they want to honor a dead relative. Maybe they’d like to rep their hometown. Maybe they just think a plain outline of the Roman numeral three looks awesome and it kinda means their name and they don’t want to get it filled in so just relax OK? Just saying, there are a bunch of different motivations behind the amazing wealth of tattoos that you see in every NBA game.
But here’s one I’ve never heard of: Jason Terry got the Larry O’Brien Trophy on his right bicep before the season started, just to show how serious he was about winning a title. From ESPN:
On Oct. 19, 2010 — a day before a preseason game against the Orlando Magic — guard DeShawn Stevenson had a get-together for his Mavericks teammates at his house.
Stevenson, who has an offseason home in Orlando, brought his chef and his personal tattoo artist for the players. It was a team-building exercise.
Stevenson’s chest, neck and arms are covered with tattoos. He even has a few facial tattoos and two piercings in his chest. But despite all of his tattoos, what he saw teammate Jason Terry do was mind-boggling at the time.
Terry got one placed on his right biceps of the Larry O’Brien Trophy, given to the winner of the NBA championship. [...]
“Everybody laughed and they thought it was a joke at the time,” said Terry, who along with Dirk Nowitzki are the only remaining players from the Mavs’ 2006 Finals loss to the Miami Heat. “When they actually see me get it, they were like, ‘This boy is serious.’ And our whole talk and conversation was about right now, about us getting to this point and winning it all.”
Of course DeShawn Stevenson has a personal tattoo artist and throws tattoo parties for his teammates. That is probably the least shocking thing in the world. I’d be more surprised if neither of those things were true. Moving on.
Pretty ballsy move by Terry, getting a championship trophy permanently inked in to his skin before a season where no one gave the Mavericks a chance to contend for a title. That shows you the kind of confidence that NBA players have in themselves. You don’t get a tattoo of the ultimate prize unless you think you can actually back it up.
You’ll notice that Terry didn’t get a tattoo of the Western Conference championship trophy. He got the NBA championship trophy, which still makes this a potentially bad decision. After all, if the Mavs lose in the Finals again, Jason Terry’s got a permanent reminder that his team fell short, and some enterprising trash talker is going to bring that thing up every time he raises his arm.
But I guess that’s why he got it on the inside of his bicep, where it’s way easier to hide. Veteran move.