Basketball and Religion…..and Inscriptions.
We see it numerous times every Sunday in football – a player scores a touchdown and points up at the skies or bends down on a knee and bows his head. Ditto for soccer, after a goal. In baseball, we see players point and look up as they step on home plate after a home run. I don’t watch hockey.
In basketball, I recall Allen Iverson making upwardly pointing gestures often during games. He was very animated in that sense. I definitely hear God being thanked nightly in post game and sideline interviews, by almost every player. Tons of players have crosses tatted on all over their arms and bodies, easily visible on cards and during televised games.
In the 1996, an Islamic point guard of the Denver Nuggets, Mahmoud Abdul-Raul (formerly Chris Jackson), made the news when he took a religious stance and chose not to stand during the National Anthem of a game.
One of my favorite players is Jesus Shuttlesworth, aka Ray Allen.
All this got me thinking, how many players have religious inscriptions on their autographed cards? Off the top of my head, I can think of David Robinson who puts bible verses in almost all of his autographs and Mark Jackson who puts “God Bless” on his cards. I’m sure there are a lot more, but I can’t recall any at the moment.
What players do you know that have religious inscriptions on their autographed cards? I’d love to hear feedback and/or see images. What are your thoughts on these types of inscriptions? Do you enjoy them? Do you take offense to it? Personally, I like them, as I feel like I have more insight to that player’s life, outside of the court.
Mark Jackson 99 UD Retro Inkredibles
David Robinson 01 Fleer Greats of the Game
Avery Johnson 98 SP Authentic Sign of the Times
Charlie Ward 01 Fleer Greats of the Game
With more international players becoming common in the NBA, I would be curious to see the Asian players put Buddhist inscriptions on their cards. Maybe Yao Ming already has? Not every basketball player is Catholic or Christian, so I would find it fascinating to see something such as a Muslim or Buddhist inscription on a card.