Larry Bird racked up a few interesting nicknames in his NBA career. It's not unusual to hear him referred to as Larry Legend, but his handle (what is it?) is definitely one of the most unique nicknames around. Here are a few other current and former NBA stars that have some entertaining monikers.
Before Michael Jordan, the term "highlight reel" was not part of everyday vernacular. After Jordan, it seemed as though his unbelievable athleticism had him flying through the air. Hence the nickname.
Most basketball fans would draw a blank when asked to identify Tyrone Bogues. However, if his nickname is mentioned, plenty of basketball fans will remember him. Despite his diminutive stature, he maintained a tough, physical presence on the court.
Metta World Peace (formerly Ron Artest) has this man to look up to. Lloyd Bernard Free pioneered the act of legally changing one's name to a slogan. He's more commonly known by his legal name, which also ties into his nickname from his playing days.
Nate Archibald is one of the great guards in NBA history. A precursor to Allen Iverson, Archibald became known for winding his way through much taller players on the way to the hoop. From those players' perspective, his nickname is fitting.
Chauncey Billups is able to strike fear in the hearts of opposing fans when he gets the ball in the waning minutes of a close game. If his nickname is any indication, Chauncey relishes the opportunity to drain the big shots.
Karl Malone had a history of coming through for the Utah Jazz when he played for them. As one-half of arguably the deadliest pick-and-roll combo in NBA history, Malone got his nickname because he always delivered.
Before George Gervin played for the San Antonio Spurs, nobody had heard of "the finger roll." Maybe it was his secret move that gave him confidence on the hardwood, but his calm approach is what's behind his nickname.
When he entered the NBA, Vince Carter's athletic ability was off the charts. It didn't seem humanly possible for someone to make dunking look so easy. His nickname hinted that he might have some other-worldly ability.
A pearl is known for being special, extraordinary and beautiful. Those adjectives describe Earl Monroe's skills on the court. That's part of the reason that his nickname stuck with him throughout his playing days.
Current Celtic Kevin Garnett made the jump to the NBA straight from high school, bringing a much-needed sense of excitement to the Minnesota Timberwolves franchise in his rookie season. Garnett's nickname provided an accurate description of why Timberwolves tickets became the hottest thing in town.
Ben Wallace earned his nickname guarding the basket for the Detroit Pistons during his first stint with the team, from 2000 to 2006. A clever play on Wallace's first name makes his nickname a perfect fit.