Paul Pierce
Photo: Kathy Willens/Associated Press

There have been many crazy stories surrounding NBA players over the years and you will find 5 of the best below, beginning with Paul Pierce.

Pierce boasts a Hall of Fame career plus an NBA ring but it could have been a lot different thanks to an incident in his third year with the Boston Celtics. At the age of 22, Pierce attended a private club in Boston where he was smashed over the head with a bottle and stabbed 11 times. Pierce was rushed to hospital, where he underwent lung surgery but fortunately, he managed to survive the gruesome attack. Most amazingly, Pierce did not miss a game for the Celtics and participated in all 82 games of the 2000/01 season, which is incredible.

Moving to the Washington Wizards locker room in 2009 and we come to an altercation between Gilbert Arenas and Javaris Crittendon. The pair reportedly argued over a card game on a flight, with Arenas telling Crittendon, “I play with guns,” to which Crittendon replied, “Well I play with guns too.” Two days later, Arenas walked into the dressing room with four guns before asking Crittendon to choose from the selection. There was no need as Crittendon was already armed with a gun of his own, which was pointing at Arenas. Fortunately, there were no shots fired and the dispute ended peacefully.

With the availability of sports betting in Tennessee, there are plenty of interesting markets on which to bet but the next story is something you would never have believed was going to happen. News surfaced that Kim Jong-un, the North Korean leader, was a big fan of the Chicago Bulls but no one expected to see him in a photo alongside Bulls legend Dennis Rodman. In many ways, given previous experience, it should not have come as a major shock to see Rodman meet Kim Jong-un but the basketball star later returned with a group of ex-NBA players to play an exhibition game.

Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen formed arguably the greatest duo in NBA history but they were extremely competitive off the court. Jordan in-particular liked to win, at everything, regardless of whether it was an important basketball game or a game of table tennis with mates. The competitiveness extended to the bedroom and according to Chicago Bulls assistant coach Johnny Bach, Pippen was “very blessed down below.” The words did not go down too kindly with Jordan, and with rumours circulating of a casual relationship between Pippen and Madonna, Jordan apparently told Madonna he could satisfy her way better than Pippen. Madonna replied, “Not a chance.”

Finally, we come to Ron Artest. Towards the end of a Pacers vs Pistons game back in 2004, Artest was involved in an altercation among players and fans. Artest fouled Pistons center Ben Wallace as Wallace was shooting and with the game effectively over, due to the score, Wallace chose to shove Artest and things quickly got out of control. During the incident, Pistons fan John Green threw a drink at Artest, who proceeded to jump into the crowd and confront the wrong man. This led to a brawl between Pistons fans and several of the Pacers plus Artest went on to punch Pistons fan A.J. Shackleford, who had reportedly been taunting Artest verbally. Artest has since changed his name twice, firstly to Metta World Peace in 2011 and later to Metta Sandiford-Artest in May 2020.