Issue 49: The Best NBA Duo Nicknames

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Issue 49: The Best NBA Duo Nicknames

We’ve covered some of the best names in the NBA before. This was a mix of nicknames + actual birthnames, but the fact remains: those were all singular players.

When two NBA-ers team up, though? That’s when you can really get creative with nicknames. Or maybe you’re just lazy with saying their full names and want something a bit shorter.

Either way, they roll right off the tongue and sound fantastic. Here are the finest NBA duo nicknames the league has ever given us.

Collin Sexton and Darius Garland: Sexland

Over the past 15 or so years, the Cleveland Cavaliers have basically had two possible season outcomes.

When LeBron James was in town (let’s say after his first two years in the league, from 2005 to 2010, and again from 2014 to 2018), the team was always a threat to win the Eastern Conference and compete for an NBA championship.

When LeBron James has not been on the team (from 2010 to 2014, and again from 2018 to the present day), the Cavs have been…hmm, what’s a nice way to put it…very bad at winning basketball games.

Things are looking up, though! The Cavs have some nice young pieces and just acquired Jarrett Allen in that big ol’ James Harden trade. Allen should be a solid center with fantastic hair for years to come. Cleveland also has the Browns and Indians, who are both quite good.

But the most exciting part? The dynamic backcourt duo of Collin Sexton and Darius Garland. Or, as their teammate Larry Nance, Jr. dubbed them: Sexland.

Sometimes you can just combine parts of two players’ names and get fantastic results. In this case, it’s a delightful pairing.

LeBron James and Anthony Davis: LeBrow

The Los Angeles Lakers are the reigning NBA champions and the early-season favorites to win it all again this year. That’s largely thanks to having two of the top ten players in the league: LeBron James and Anthony Davis.

James has certainly made a name for himself off the basketball court. He was the best part of the movie Trainwreck, he’s produced multiple television shows (like the oddly mesmerizing The Wall), and regularly given back to local communities.

Most basketball fans couldn’t tell you as much about Davis, though. He has shown some surprisingly funny acting chops—like being a tiny version of himself for Mobil or ruining a kid’s dream in a Foot Locker commercial—but the first thing people notice about him? His unibrow.

Davis has on occasion embraced his facial hair, and the New Orleans Pelicans, in particular, tried to make it a big ol’ marketing event during the earlier part of his career. That’s largely in the past, but…well, he still has a unibrow. So the combination of “LeBron” and “unibrow” becomes “LeBrow,” and it’s a perfect nickname for the league’s most powerful duo.

Boban Marjanovic and Tobias Harris: Bobi + Tobi

We’re a few trades removed from this dynamic duo, but Tobias Harris and Boban Marjanovic developed a fast friendship from their time with the Detroit Pistons.

Both players were later traded to the Los Angeles Clippers. The pair was again traded to Philadelphia, which is a pretty spectacular run of two players remaining together on three straight teams.

Alas, Marjanovic was traded to the Dallas Mavericks in 2019, while Harris remains with the 76ers.

Still, the duo gave us a fun rhyming nickname. More importantly, they gave us a fun internet series: The Bobi + Tobi Show.

Follow along with a fairly tall man and an even taller man as they have delightful adventures. My personal favorite? Bobi teaches Tobi in a spin class.

Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving: 7/11

There are a few other duos with the same nickname. Miami’s Goran Dragic and Dion Waiters had it first, though Waiters may not even play in the NBA again as he mulls retirement, so I’ll give it to this duo since Durant and Irving are still on the same team.

It’s a pretty simple name: Durant wears number 7 and Irving wears number 11. Some fans might like to add in things about how they’re always open, or how you like seeing them in the wild, or how they can point you to the tastiest lukewarm hot dog.

Really, though, it boils down to the numbers on their jerseys. Simple, yet effective.

For an added bonus, the Nets can now take the newly added James Harden—with jersey number 13—and run with a “Bad Luck 7/11” trio. Or maybe I’m just strange.

Tim Hardaway, Mitch Richmond, and Chris Mullin: Run TMC

Before you get up in arms and accuse me of not knowing what a duo is, I will openly admit this is a trio of players. I can, in fact, count to three (much higher than that is pushing it, though).

This is such a perfect nickname, it gets to stay. Despite their recent NBA dominance, the 1990s-era Golden State Warriors did not have much success in the win-loss column. But they sure were fun to watch.

Tim Hardaway, Mitch Richmond, and Chris Mullin could all run up and down the floor with solid speed, and Richmond and Mullin in particular could knock down shots like nobody’s business.

As a result, the trio became the focal point of coach Don Nelson’s run’n’gun offense, which had a lot of…well, running and gunning (a.k.a. fastbreaks and shooting threes).

And because Run-DMC was one of the hottest groups of the time, the name caught steam and took on a life of its own. Ain’t nothing tricky about that.

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