Basketball has always been tied with hip-hop culture, and young ballers have always been quite aware of their appearance, trying to look and act tough in the court to get respect from their peers.
Cornrows have been an iconic hip-hop and basketball hairstyle for ages now, and with young players making it to the NBA after growing up in the hood, their cornrows have influenced more and more players to wear them.
Today, we’re going to let you know about the top 10 cornrowed players in the history of the NBA. This list features players that wore cornrows for most of their career or a very long time, not just over one game or two. Also, we’re excluding dreadlocks for the purposes of this article.
10. Ricky Davis
Ricky Davis was an extremely prolific scorer and talented player, but he was never able to establish himself on one team and wandered around the league for a lot of time before trying his luck overseas.
Playing for the Hornets, Heat, Cavs, Celtics, Timberwolves and Clippers; Davis posted career averages of 13.9 points, 3.6 dimes and 3.4 boards per game, but he’s mostly remembered for his great cornrows.
9. Andre Miller
Andre Miller never got enough recognition, but he was by far one of the most reliable, consistent and durable point guards in the history of the game, playing for 17 seasons with the Cavs, Clippers, Nuggets, Sixers, Blazers, Wizards and Kings.
Miller was a dime machine during his prime (wearing cornrows, obviously) and a huge veteran leadership off the bench, constantly mentoring young ballers through the last years of his career.
8. Latrell Sprewell
Latrell Sprewell always put on a show in the offensive end of the hardwood, and he even helped Garnett carry the Minnesota Timberwolves into relevance with his crafty moves and ability to pull up from everywhere on the floor.
Sprewell was the whole package, bragging around with his signature shoes and his braids, and if his own ego wouldn’t have gotten in his way, perhaps he would’ve even won an NBA Championship.
7. Jermaine O’Neal
Jermaine O’Neal was one of the most dominant two way big man in the league during his prime, especially over his Indiana Pacers tenure paired with Ron Artest as one of the most terrifying defensive duos in the league.
O’Neal had a nice touch below the basket and wasn’t going to let you get any easy buckets, as well as being quite a crafty rebounders in both ends of the glass, and even though he shaved all of his head over the last passage of his career, his best years came with the cornrows.
6. Ben Wallace
Ben Wallace is by far one of the fiercest defenders in the history of the game, owning the record for most Defensive Player of the Year awards with 4, leading the Pistons to dominance with his top-notch rim protection and physical style of play.
Wallace was incredibly strong and dominant down low, and you just couldn’t out hustle him, as he was just going to make you pay and earn all the points the hard way after crashing into a huge brick wall.
5. Rip Hamilton
Rip Hamilton was the scoring punch of the Detroit Pistons during their Championship tenure, a guard/forward with a sweet touch from beyond the arc as well as a freak-like athleticism that made him score at will.
We don’t talk about Hamilton enough, but he was a synonym of consistency and a walking bucket throughout his entire career, and he’s mostly remembered for his cornrows and his bad ass mask.
4. Chris Bosh
Most People don’t remember how much of an offensive beast young Chris Bosh was during his Toronto Raptors tenure, mostly because he embraced a lesser role as the Miami Heat’s third scoring option.
Bosh was a crafty scorer from everywhere on the floor as well as a dominant rebounder, not to mention his great length and wingspan combined with top-notch defensive awareness also made him a great rim protector, and let’s hope he’s able to come back to the league any time soon.
3. Kawhi Leonard
Kawhi Leonard is already the best two-way player in the league despite not being around for too long, and even though his low profile personality doesn’t go with his cornrows, we wouldn’t be able to recognize him without them.
Leonard is the Spurs franchise player and best defender, and he’s the yearly frontrunner to win the Defensive Player of the Year and MVP awards, so expect his cornrows to be featured in thousands of posters for a very long time.
2. Carmelo Anthony
Most young fans aren’t going to remember him with braids on his hair, but actually, Carmelo Anthony’s best seasons came with cornrows as one of the craftiest scorers in the league, until he finally outgrew the Denver Nuggets and force a move out of the team.
Anthony doesn’t get the respect he deserves due to his ball hogging and the fact that his scoring touch has gone a bit during season 15, but he’s one of the best shooters this game has ever seen, the all-time leading scorer in team USA, and a lock to make the Hall of Fame.
1. Allen Iverson
Naturally, Allen Iverson is the ultimate cornrow master, being such an iconic player that the league even had to establish a dress code to prevent players from dressing like The Answer always did throughout his successful career.
Iverson was perhaps the most talented player ever not named Michael Jordan, but lack of discipline and a capable supporting cast prevented him from fulfilling his true potential. Still, the Hall of Famer will go down as one of the most dominant scorers and playmakers in the history of basketball.