Professional sports seems to be the perfect breeding ground for bizarre and hilarious nicknames for athletes. Sometimes, the new moniker comes from an inside joke with teammates. Often, reporters or announcers will come up with a nickname for an athlete as a way to describe the kind of person and player they are.
Not all of these names stick, but some have become inextricably linked to the athlete as a way of celebrating their heritage, skills, or personality.
To determine the most unforgettable nicknames in sports, 24/7 Wall St. consulted a wide variety of sources, including the Sports Reference family of sites, to find the most bizarre, unique, and memorable nicknames given to players from the MLB, NHL, NFL, and NBA.
Some players like Babe Ruth and Yogi Berra, had nicknames so iconic that people may have forgotten these baseball legends had actual first names. Other athletes with big personalities seem prone to attract humorous monikers. Superstars like Charles Barkley and Shaquille O’Neal each have about a half dozen well-known monikers that have stuck throughout their careers. These are the funniest athletes of all time.
This list is in no way comprehensive. There are hundreds and hundreds of strange and hilarious nicknames in the history of the four major sports leagues in America. Many nicknames have likely been lost to history or simply never even made it out of the locker room.