These days, tattoos are pretty much synonymous with professional athletes. Watch a sport, any sport, and how many bodies do you see adorned with ink? The answer is obvious, A TON.
You would think, with an athlete’s job being performed in front of an audience, many times a national one at that, they would have a little more discretion when it comes to what they choose to display on themselves.
On the other hand, why should they care? People should be entitled to put whatever the hell they want on their body without being judged. Unfortunately, with every other facet of an athlete’s life falling under the media microscope, it’s inevitable that personal choices in the form of body art are too, (un)fair game.
The “Great” Poohdini
For those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about, or always thought it was the grim reaper (like me). “Poohdini” is the name above a magician, wizard (or grim reaper) looking tat on his left shoulder.
In his own words, the former MVP described the tattoo as–
A wizard holding a ball, ‘Poohdini’ my nickname going across there like magic. So the great Houdini, I put Poohdini. I put the ‘dini’ in the back of Pooh so it would sound like Poohdini, like the great. My Grandma just came up with the name ‘Pooh’ it’s like Winnie the Pooh bear, so it just stuck with me my whole life.
Well, according to Bleacher Report the ‘Great Poohdini’ is not so great at all; as they ranked it one of the 25 worst tattoos in NBA HISTORY! Ouch. Here’s what BR had to say about poor Poohdini.
The story behind the idea is quite genuine, but the portrait of the wizard—or whatever he is supposed to be—on his shoulder is downright creepy.
There had to be a million other directions he could have taken this idea. Any concept other than this one probably would have been good enough.
What’s surprising is this came when Rose was still the reigning NBA MVP, not after the injuries, letdowns, misleading ad campaigns, and failed returns. Meaning there were still a lot more Rose lovers than haters. Apparently there’s no room for apologists in the tattoo rating game.
Ironically, when explaining his tattoos, Rose speaks about his “only God can judge me” tattoo immediately after detailing “Poohdini.”
Honestly (not that anyone cares about my opinion) finding out it was a wizard and not the grim reaper actually made me like the tattoo more. But that’s coming from a nerd for Arthurian legend, Merlin, and all that other lame sh*t.
As for eight of the other nine tattoos, Rose talks about the inspiration behind each one in this video done by Mouthpiece Sports. Rose has had the majority of his work done by South Side custom tattoo parlor, Shred’s Inferno.
His latest tattoo, a portrait of Dr. Martin Luther King praying, was not done until earlier this year; after the video was made.
In case you don’t want to sit through a six minute video, here’s a full gallery featuring all of Derrick’s tattoos and his reasons behind having them done.