NBA Hall of Famer Ray Allen is using his time in COVID-19 lockdown to get real about something that’s been very near and dear to him for a long time: his hairline.
Allen typically shaves his head, something he said he has been doing with clippers himself all his life. But during the coronavirus crisis, Allen said this week that he will stop the shaving and let nature take its horseshoe-shaped course on the top of his head. Yes, Allen is balding in the middle of his head and compared himself to Sherman Helmsley of The Jeffersons fame.
He even posted a photo of his poorly coiffed pate on Instagram, writing, “So I’m gonna ride #myJefferson out until the ‘Rona’ kicks rocks! For those of you that don’t know I have cut my own hair my whole life so it’s been hard not to put the clippers to it but when I look back at these pics I will remember the Rona!”
LeBron James had Embarrassing Hairline Fail This Season
And Allen wants other NBA personalities to join him, saying, “I nominate all my bald or going bald brothers to let it grow out, y’all know who you are! Lol.” Among those Allen tagged, notably, are former teammates Shaquille O’Neal and LeBron James.
That could be something of a touchy subject for James, whose hairline has ebbed and flowed over the years. It’s long been speculated that James adds plugs to cover his receded hairline in the offseason. Over the course of a season, the hairline retreats like the British leaving Dunkirk.
This year, James had an especially difficult follicular challenge: During a game against Utah in October, his plugs appeared to be falling out while the game was being played. Teammate Anthony Davis, fighting back laughter, informed him from the bench.
The exchange was caught on national television:
O’Neal Showed His Hairline After Losing Bet
O’Neal has been open about the recession taking place atop his noggin before. A month ago, he lost a bet to former teammate Dwyane Wade. O’Neal explained that he told Wade that Milwaukee would beat the Heat by 20 points back on March 2. Instead, the Bucks had their worst game of the season and lost by 16.
“I said, what do you want me to do, pay you?” O’Neal recalled. “He said, ‘No, you gotta let your hairline grow out. We want to see your hairline looking like Kenny Smith.’ So I just lined it up for you all so y’all can see where my hairline starts.”
Give O’Neal credit for that.
Among those Allen also challenged were other players-turned-broadcasters Richard Hamilton and Richard Jefferson (who has already accepted the challenge), as well as former Celtics teammates Carlos Arroyo, Jermaine O’Neal and Stephon Marbury, who is now coaching in China. Former NBA players Damien Wilkins and Carlos Boozer is also on the list, as is comedian Chris Spencer.
In 2012, Boozer famously tried to cover up his balded head with a product called Bigen Hair Dye and the results were a near tragedy.
“So I tried it,” Boozer later explained, “and he just made myself look like shoe polish up there.”
Maybe Boozer will accept Allen’s challenge and ditch the clippers, ditch the Bigen and let that hairline out in its glory.