Of all the jobs in the world that one would expect to NOT have a problem with tattoos, the NBA is right up there at the top of the list. So when news broke about JR Smith alleging retaliation from the National Basketball Association over a tattoo of the “Supreme” apparel logo it came as quite a bit of a shock.
“So I was informed today that I would be fined every game if I don’t cover up my ‘SUPREME TATTOO’ on my legs during games!!” Smith posted, along with some cry laughing emojis. “These people in the league office are something else!” he concluded, along with a middle-finger emoji.
175.1k Likes, 1,889 Comments – JR Smith (@teamswish) on Instagram: “#Work #SupremeTeam”
Smith got the tattoo back in August and let the world take a peak. Again via Instagram with the hashtags #Work and #SupremeTeam.
Supreme, which is only the latest in a long line of urban wear brands to gain the affection of black NBAers, has been on Smith’s mind for some time, dating back to December when he reportedly wore a “Supreme” shooting sleeve. FYL, Supreme does not make athletic apparel.
Though Smith isn’t getting paid for advertising by the clothing brand, the NBA is serious about prohibiting players from wearing a corporate logo or tattoo on any part of their body.
Cleveland Cavs veteran guard JR Smith is the luckiest basketball player on earth. Since his days with the Knicks when he chose to hang with Rihanna after Game 2 of a playoff series in which his shooting was god awful, to his other youthful indiscretions, Smith has been getting more passes than Jerry Rice in a Super Bowl.
Look, it’s very understandable that the league doesn’t want to give any corporate entity free advertising by way of its players, but fining Smith for each game that he doesn’t cover up the logo is a bit harsh, bordering on bullying.
Supreme doesn’t own the rights to the word “supreme”. And if he hadn’t mentioned the line himself on multiple occasions there’s a strong chance that the stuff shirts at NBA headquarters would have known the significance of the tattoo in the first place.