When it comes to ink, it’s always a good idea to see what a trendsetter is doing. Allen Iverson was simply way more than crossovers and stepping over people, as he was an icon that changed the NBA.
With memorable quotes about practice all the way to fashion trends, it’s safe to say that he transformed an entire culture. Particularly, Iverson’s tattoos are known to be dedicated to the people and things that are close to him. With that said, we take a look at his more than 30 tattoos and try to decipher the meaning of each and every one of them.
1. ‘RA Boogie’
AI had this tattoo as a tribute to his childhood friend Rahsaan, who was fatally shot in Hampton, Virginia. In addition, he also named his son Rahsaan.
2. Loyalty in Chinese
Just below his “RA Boogie” tattoo, Iverson had the word “loyalty” inked in Chinese.
3. ‘HOLD MY OWN’
This tattoo symbolizes looking for opportunities, staying grounded, and withstanding the difficulties of life.
4. ‘MONEY BAGZ’
5. ‘Virginia Slim’
A spiderweb and the words “Virginia Slim” can be seen above the left side of Allen Iverson’s neck. This is possibly attributed to his birthplace, which is in Virginia.
This tattoo is a tribute to his son, Isaiah Rahsaan Iverson.
7. ‘CRU THIK’
The Philadelphia 76ers legend has four tattoos of this all over his body — on his left arm, right arm, right leg and on the neck. This is Iverson’s crew that he grew up with and guys that he’s loyal to. Eventually, it also became the name of his record company.
“NBN” stands for Newport Bad News, as it’s what his hometown is popularly called due to all the constant negativity.
9. Soldier Skull
In a previous interview, Iverson revealed that the soldier’s head symbolizes his life, which has been a war, and how he has battled through it.
Tawanna Turner is Iverson’s ex-wife. They were married from 2001 to 2013.
12. Mother and Grandmother Initials
13. Praying Hands
The initials of his mother and grandmother are tributes to the two most important women in his life. AI’s grandma passed away when he was young, thus the praying hands.
14. ‘Tiaura and Deuce’
Tiaura is the name of his daughter, while Deuce is the name of his son.
For those who weren’t aware, “JEWELZ” was actually Iverson’s handle as a rap artist.
16. Screaming Skull
17. ‘Fear No One’
Complementing his “screaming skull” tattoo, the words “Fear No One” can be seen. Previously, he elaborated about the tattoo and said: “I got one that says ‘Fear No One’ cause you’ll never catch me looking scared.”
18. Grim Reaper
This was actually an old tattoo that he eventually modified later on. Originally, this was supposed to be a Grim Reaper holding a ball. However, it ended up looking like a monkey and he was teased over it by his friend, Rahsaan. Iverson also admitted that this was his only tattoo that doesn’t have any meaning whatsoever.
19. Black Panther
The “Black Panther” tattoo was used to cover up the original “Grim Reaper” tattoo.
20. Cross of Daggers and ‘Only The Strong Survive’
Iverson previously explained this tattoo, saying that the the quote “Only the strong survive” is the one true thing he learned in his life.
22. ‘THE REALIST’
This tattoo symbolizes how Allen Iverson was practical, rather than hopeful, as he used facts and reason in his perception of the world.
23. ‘EAST END’
24. Bundle of Currency Notes
A bundle of currency notes along with the letter “A” can be seen on the right hand of Iverson.
This stands for the name of his daughter, Tiaura Iverson.
26. ‘SEE YOU WHEN I GET THERE’
27. ‘BAD NEWZ’
29. Growling Bulldog
This tattoo symbolizes strength, toughness, courage, and determination. Moreover, this was the first tattoo that Iverson had before he went to Georgetown.
30. ‘THE ANSWER!’
Of course. “The Answer” was the most popular nickname of Allen Iverson. It’s only fitting that he had it inked on him.
This appears to be some sort of Arabic language inked on the right forearm of Iverson.