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Is LaMelo Ball's new back tattoo real?


Hornets star LaMelo Ball is not afraid to stand out.

That lifestyle is written all over his social media and signature shoes, with coined sayings such as “1 of 1,” “rare,” and “not from here.” Now, Ball appears to have turned those mantras into a permanent accessory.

The 2021 NBA Rookie of the Year went viral on X on Tuesday for a massive back tattoo that is impossible to ignore.

Is Ball’s new ink real? The Sporting News takes a closer look below.

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Ball was all over social media Tuesday after a picture of a new back tattoo went viral. The ink reads “RARE” across his shoulders and back in the same font that is on the bottom of his signature sneakers.

Beneath that, that tattoo reads “ONE” with an alien that has the number one carved into its head.

The Instagram account “inkednba” was the first to post the picture, which has been cited by various sports outlets since then.

Ball has not yet posted or confirmed that the new tattoo is real, but it does appear to be the Hornets star in the photo.

We will keep you updated if Ball posts the new ink himself.

This is one of many tattoos that Ball has on his body. Following his Rookie of the Year, he did an interview with GQ to break down all of his ink.

Ball has added several tattoos to the mix since then.

One that caught some attention earlier this season is the bright red “LF” behind his ear, which caused a stir at the NBA office.

“LF” is an abbreviation for Ball’s middle name “LaFrance,” which also doubles as his lifestyle clothing brand.

The NBA uniform rules prohibit players from displaying any brand logos outside of their uniforms and sneakers, so the league office told Ball he needed to cover his tattoo with a bandaid. Ball followed those rules for a few games before the NBA office overturned its own ruling.

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