Top 5 Dirtiest Players in the NBA
Metta World Peace Arguing
As we near the playoffs, it’s time to look at the uglier side of the NBA. I’m talking about those players you love to hate. The ones that would make Dennis Rodman and Bad Boy Detroit Pistons stand and applaud, the ones that cause refs to need throat surgery from blowing their whistles so many times.
The kind of player you cheer for to get early fouls just so you don’t have to see their face for the next couple of minutes or so. Some people call them crafty veterans; I call them cheap, evil and sometimes even malicious. Often these players will have you throwing objects at your TV because they are so good at being dirty that they don’t get called for it.
You know the moves, the “inadvertent trip, the eye poke, the shoulder check on a screen. If these happen for your team you love it, but when it’s against you, you wish the fires of hell upon the ones who do it.
So, Forget the Kobe’s, LeBron’s and Durant’s of the league, they are too pretty for this list. This list is about the down and dirty players of the league, the grinders, the uglies, guys that would break your jaw if it meant stopping you from scoring. These players either make you afraid to drive the lane or annoy you to the point of a technical foul and a free point for their team.
Whether it’s their use of an extra elbow here and there to get a player riled up, or some downright evil trash talk to get someone off their game, these guys do their utmost to destroy you physically and mentally. Here are the top five dirtiest players in the NBA.
Well respected around the league, Shane Battier is one of those players that just gets under the skin of every player he is assigned to guard. He looks like your dad dressed up as an NBA player for Halloween and shaved his head to show his son he can be cool too. He isn't too athletic yet he finds a way to stick on players like a leach, a seemingly well-natured leach that gets away with his patented hand in the face technique even though, he often smacks the player in the face directly after. His only offensive game is a bizarre and effective set shot from three, but his real value to his team comes from his ability to cause opposing stars to seek anger management after games from the frustration he causes.
Kendrick Perkins fighting a call
I’m fairly certain that Napoleon smiled more in exile than Kendrick Perkins has done his entire life. Despite sporting a mean looking scowl that makes it seem like the only words he’s capable of uttering is “Grr”, Perkins is one of the most effective defensive big men because of his physical and sometimes overly physical game. When he isn’t bricking six-foot jump shots, Perkins spends his time crashing down on top of the latest big man to get a first step on him. I see the strategy. Heck, if I was that slow I would attempt to chop off people's arms on their way just like Perkins does. His muddy, dirty work and frequent altercations with players and referees alike are one of the reasons the Thunder have turned into one of the best defensive teams in the NBA.
There are guys in the league that exist to play the game right and then there are players like Reggie Evans. Mostly known for his famous altercation with Chris Kaman in which he grabbed Kaman’s um, untouchables let’s say, Evans is a cheap and hate inspiring player to watch. Seriously, if you are going up against Evans in a game, wear a jock strap and have some rose thorns sticking out of your jersey because he is going to be grabbing at everything you have when the ref isn’t looking. Evans seems to think the phrase “what’s yours is mine”, is something that stretches to body parts and clothing. He’s a talented rebounder for sure, but when it comes to what he thinks is considered defense, you really can’t blame some of the reactions he’s instigated from players over the years.
Metta World Peace
The most hilariously named player of all time comes in at number three. Ron Artest renaming himself Metta World Peace is kind of like renaming Maurice Clarett to Emotionally Stable Law Follower. It’s like putting up a sign that says “Nazi Propaganda Party”, and building an old navy behind it. Peace’s view of himself as some kind of peace bringer is such a sad attempt at redemption and it was cemented last year when he rebounded a ball against the Thunder and then swung his elbows like a mad man concussing James Harden and earning him a big fat playoff series length suspension. World Peace will always hustle for his team, but for the other team, it means powerful elbows smashing into their jaws and supposedly accidental face swats. It makes one reminisce on the time after the Lakers won the title where World Peace, named Ron Artest at the time, thanked his psychiatrist. I think he should’ve saved that thanks because clearly he didn't do much to stable the insanity that is Metta World Peace.
The ultimate enforcer. Garnett is the one player in the league besides Kobe Bryant that I would believe would kill to win a game. Garnett though, would do it in the first game of the preseason. I have never seen a more volatile and aggressive player in basketball. If you’re ever looking to educate your children on curse words, I recommend you listen to a Celtics radio broadcast. Not only will you hear Garnett screaming obscenities at the other team, but often you will hear him screaming at himself, teammates, random mothers in the crowd and pretty much anyone within earshot.
Garnett is the most clever of the dirty players in the league in that he often instigates secretly only to see his plan come to fruition when an opposing player erupts in anger towards him. The best example of this was earlier this season when he talked trash about Carmelo Anthony’s wife during a game which turned the often mild mannered Anthony into a rage of emotion on the court and a heat seeking revenge missile aimed at the Celtics locker room because of it.
When Garnett isn't chewing broken glass or teaching his pet parrot N.W.A lyrics, he is committing illegal screens, blatantly elbowing players in the face and being an all-around vicious human being on the court. He is without a doubt, the dirtiest player in the NBA.