Nicknames have always been a part of sports, but NBA fans in the United States are facing some stiff competition from the unique monikers that are apparently coming out of China.
Nick Kapur, a Japan and East Asia historian who works at Rutgers University, detailed in a massive Twitter thread Monday some of the elaborate nicknames the biggest stars in the NBA have received in China (warning: post contains profanity):
Curry also has the more family-friendly nicknames of "Sprout God" and "The Elementary School Student," the latter of which may not go down so well with the two-time MVP.
San Antonio Spurs legend Manu Ginobili unquestionably gets the biggest upgrade in terms of his English nickname and his Chinese equivalent. Occasionally dubbed "The Magician," Ginobili is known as "The Demon Blade" among fans in China.
Kapur wrote, "Ginobili earned this moniker for his ability to slash to the hoop using tricky footwork like the Eurostep."
Here are some more of the stars Kapur listed:
- Russell Westbrook: Wei Dude
- Kobe Bryant: Snail Shell
- Charles Barkley: The Flying Pig
- Michael Jordan: Gang Boss
- Giannis Antetokounmpo: Letters Bro
- Dirk Nowitzki: The German Panzer Tank
- Scottie Pippen: Second Best Under Heaven
- Klay Thompson: The Buddha
- Shaquille O'Neal: The Giant Shark
- Kevin Durant: Schoolbag Du
Kapur's full list is well worth your time, and with any luck, some of these nicknames will start catching on in the United States. Cleveland Cavaliers swingman JR Smith will henceforth be called "The Nerve Knife" throughout the NBA playoffs.