As someone who looked at Baron Davis' beard on a regular basis when he played for the Warriors, I can honestly say that James Harden's beard beats it by a mile. Baron's beard looked like it belonged to a hipster or lumberjack. Harden's beard looks like it belongs to a really cool action hero, and when combined with the mohawk, he looks like a cooler Mr. T.
Rating: Perfect 10
James Harden's look has it all. He has mastered the fine art of combining the best attributes of action hero (Shaft) with R&B singer (Isaac Hayes). As soon as you see him walk into a room, you immediately know that he's cooler than you are. And you're totally OK with that.
Subtle, but awesome. Would Kendrick Perkins look the same without the beard? Perhaps he would, but I can almost guarantee you that he would look 50% less mean. The beard is also pretty original, combining the Egyptian Style "Ramses II" look with a subtle soul patch. The soul patch would look poetic on it's own, but contributes to the overall look of destruction when paired with the Ramses beard. He could definitely add on the hair end, though.
There is a fine line between facial hair being an accentuation and a distraction, and I think Perk's subtle facial hair finds this line. Anything more and he'd look semi-ridiculous like Drew Gooden. Anything less and he'd lose the Leonidas-like angles. The haircut is simple, but I do wonder what he'd look like if he tried the bald look.
In terms of style, Robert Swift is the poor man's Chris Andersen. I would have respected his style more if he used his hair to compliment what's going on with the rest of his body, like Andersen or even Dennis Rodman. But it looks like he just kind of forgot about it and let it grow out. It's like he went to one extreme, but didn't bother to complete the look.
If you're going to play on the fringes, then you need to have a better plan. Coming into the league, Robert Swift looked like a chemistry tutor. He tried to go the Flying Tomato route, but that's kind of hard when you're seven feet tall and uncoordinated. I think his true calling at this point is to learn to play electric bass and join a SoCal 80's tribute band.
Photo by: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE
There are few things in this world that are cooler than Kevin Ollie's 2-D mustache. He's not trying to grow a two-pronged thick caterpillar like Billy Dee Williams, and it's not wispy and stupid looking like Adam Morrison's. Rather, it's a totally original look that was perfectly kept during every single game. Not one hair out of place. If you ever saw Ollie's mustache messed up, it would probably the most telling sing of the imminent apocalypse.
First, find a Sharpie. Next, take that sharpie and draw two lines over your upper lip. Congratulations, you now have the 2-D porn 'stache. I applaud any player who strives to own this look, but I have to admit it always kind of creeps me out. To paraphrase Seinfeld, to pursue this look means that you have to own a distinct wardrobe, use lots of lotions, and wear a smoking jacket.
Etan Thomas looks like someone who would fit in at a def poetry jam or something. That assumption is correct, as he has been known to write poetry with other NBA shot blocker Adonal Foyle. Serious dreads are an automatic plus, but the natural looking mustache and chin beard help as well. The only thing that keeps this from a perfect 10 is lack of originality. I'm sure there's at least a few other dudes going around with this look.
I have a soft spot for Etan, since he went from looking like this to what you see today. Unlike Swift, he had a plan and he stuck to it. From a sheer appearance standpoint, Thomas looks like he'd be right at home behind a poetry microphone, debating a political pundit, or addressing a university crowd. Unfortunately, with those lovely locks he also doesn't really look like he belongs on a basketball court.
After the jump, find our respective favorite 'looks' of all time.
The best hair and beard combo of all time has to go to my man, World B. Free. He balded at an early age, but he didn't care. He continued to rock the fro, growing a halo of hair around his shiny bald head. He also went with some epic '70s sideburns that grew wider and ended abruptly. Completing the look was a understated goatee that didn't overwhelm anything else he had going for him. For World B. Free's courage in the face of baldness, sideburn/beard combination, overall original look, creative change of name that actually complemented his real name of Lloyd Bernard Free, and excellent play on the court, he earns my vote for the greatest NBA hair of all time.
World B. Free Photo by: Scott Cunningham/NBAE via Getty Images
With apologies to such hairstyle luminaries as Jack Sikma, Dennis Rodman, and Kenny "Sky" Walker, I'm going to have to go with the Doctor. Julius Erving, a star worthy of two professional basketball leagues, pulled off the best mega 'fro of all time. In an era where style was just weird, Dr. J had the wherewithal to embrace his giant afro, couple it with a mighty goatee, and become one of the most dominant players the game has ever known.
Unlike some other goofy 'fro's, Dr. J's look actually enhanced his overall power game. His aerial assault, coupled with his penchant for prowling the paint for rebounds, was made all the more cool looking by his massive hair rocketing up above the mere mortals to control the game.
Dr J.: One of the best of all time with one of the best looks of all time.
Julius Erving Photo by: Malcolm Emmons-US PRESSWIRE
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