By Jake Brown (@JBSportsRadio)
Sometimes you really wonder what goes through the minds of the parents of some athletes when their child decides to get rid of their name. That’s especially the case when their name just becomes absurd. What do they say to their current or future children? Let’s take a look at the five most ridiculous name changes in sports history.
5. Mark Duper to Mark Super Duper
When you think of Super Duper, you may think of Super Duper Weenie-one of the best hot dog and fries spots on the planet. You usually don’t think of someone making that their legal name. Mark Duper changed his name to Mark Super Duper in 1985. The first year after the name change went great on the field for the former Dolphins receiver. After that, it went not so super on the field and off. Super Duper got into all sorts of problems after retirement.
4. Lloyd Bernard Free to World B. Free
“Hey World how are you today?” “Hey Mr. Free what’s going on?” Don’t these guys factor in the insanity around these name changes. I guess Lloyd Bernard Free changing his name to World B. Free is kind of cool, but c’mon. The former NBA player played for five teams and made an All-Star team. His nicknames were “All-World” and “Prince of Midair.”
3. Chad Johnson to Chad Ochocinco to Chad Johnson
Number 85 Chad Johnson decided that his football number was more important than his family’s last name. In 2011, Chad Johnson legally became Chad Ochocinco. That was about the time when his career took a turn and his name became more important than his job. He was never the same receiver after that and got into plenty of trouble off the field as well. After realizing how absurd it was, he changed his name back to Chad Johnson in 2012. Make up your mind, Chad!
2. Ron Artest to Metta World Peace
Ron Artest was known for his shenanigans on and off the court. He was a terrific defensive player in the NBA, but was more known for his antics off the court and the brawl that he started in 2004 known as “Malice at the Palace.” Well, for some reason Artest was inspired to change his name legally to Metta World Peace. We’ll never know what goes on in the mind of Artest or World Peace or the next name on the list.
1. Metta World Peace to Panda Friend
If you thought he was done with his antics, you were dead wrong. After Ron Artest changed his name to Metta World Peace, a contract in China inspired him to change his name to none other than “Panda Friend.” After agreeing to become the highest-paid foreign player to join the Chinese Basketball Association at $1.43 million, World Peace became Panda Friend. That jersey may just become a must-buy.