Here's what NBA players looked like before they were covered in tattoos

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Kyrie Irving Has Surprising Tattoo

Tattoos are pretty popular in the NBA. Lots of players have them, and several of them have tattoos covering their arms and chests.

But even the guys who are covered, like "Birdman" and J.R. Smith, were once clean slates.

Some of the NBA players who now have the most tats looked like completely different people early in their careers.

NOW: Chris "Birdman" Andersen

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Andersen in 2003.

nba players tattoos

Brian Bahr/Getty Images

NOW: J.R. Smith

nba players tattoos

Jason Miller/Getty Images

Smith in 2004.

nba players tattoos

Robert Laberge/Getty Images

NOW: Carmelo Anthony

nba players tattoos

Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

Anthony in 2003.

nba players tattoos

Craig Jones/Getty Images

NOW: Iman Shumpert

nba players tattoos

Jason Miller/Getty Images

Shumpert in 2009.

nba players tattoos

Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

NOW: LeBron James

nba players tattoos

YouTube/Beats by Dre

James in 2003.

nba players tattoos

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NOW: Monta Ellis

nba players tattoos

Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Ellis in 2007.

nba players tattoos

Brian Bahr/Getty Images

NOW: Jamal Crawford

nba players tattoos

Zhong Zhi/Getty Images

Crawford in 2001.

nba players tattoos

Otto Gruele Jr./Getty

NOW: Wilson Chandler

nba players tattoos

Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Chandler in 2006.

nba players tattoos

Andy Lyons/Getty Images

NOW: DeMarcus Cousins

nba players tattoos

Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Cousins in 2009.

nba players tattoos

Ned Dishman/Getty

NOW: LaMarcus Aldridge

nba players tattoos

Eric Gay/AP

Aldridge in 2006.

nba players tattoos

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

NOW: Matt Barnes

nba players tattoos

Rich Pedroncelli/AP

Barnes in 2002.

nba players tattoos

Jeff Gross/Getty Images

NOW: Brandon Jennings

nba players tattoos

Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

Jennings in 2008.

nba players tattoos

Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

NOW: DeAndre Jordan

nba players tattoos

Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Jordan in 2007.

nba players tattoos

Paul Zoeller/AP

BONUS: Can you tell who this former player is? This photo is from 1988.

nba players tattoos

Rick Stewart/Getty Images

Yup, it's Dennis Rodman.

nba players tattoos

Eugene Gologursky/Getty Images

Now check out the highest-paid players in the league: The NBA's 25 highest-paid players

Related: See some of the best and downright craziest sports fan tattoos:

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Here's what NBA players looked like before they were covered in tattoos
A Dallas Cowboys fan shows off his tattoo as the Cowboys get ready to play the San Diego Chargers in an NFL football game Sunday, Sept. 29, 2013, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
New York Yankees fan Brandon Stonehouse, of Canada, sports a Yankees tattoo as he watches batting practice before a baseball game between the Seattle Mariners and the Yankees, Wednesday, June 11, 2014 in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
Philadelphia Flyers fan Eric Rothstein sports a Flyers tattoo on his head and team colors in his hair while waiting for the start of Game 4 against the Chicago Blackhawks in the NHL Stanley Cup hockey finals on Friday, June 4, 2010, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Washington Redskins fan Kevin McCarthy of Germantown, Md., shows off his tattoo with the names of the Redskins Hall of Fame members during the first day of the NFL football team's training camp in Ashburn, Va., Friday, July 27, 2007. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
NEW YORK - APRIL 22: Brian Skidmore, fan of the St. Louis Rams shows off his Rams logo tattoo prior to the 2010 NFL Draft at Radio City Music Hall on April 22, 2010 in New York City. (Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - MAY 20: An Oakland Athletics fan shows of his tattooed leg commemorating Dallas Braden perfect game during the game against the Athletics and Detroit Tigers at the Oakland Coliseum on May 20, 2010 in Oakland, California. The Tigers defeated the Athletics 5-2. (Photo by Michael Zagaris/Getty Images)
In this May 30, 2014 photo, Felipe da Costa Almeida poses for a photo showing his tattoo of the Christ Redeemer statue over the Maracana stadium, backgrounded by the Flamengo club initials in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The tattoo reads in Portuguese, "Flamengo you are my life." Almeida said “I got the tattoo in early 2009, and later that year Flamengo won the Brazilian championship.” (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
A Pittsburgh Steelers fan shows his tattoos before an NFL football game between the Steelers and the Baltimore Ravens, Sunday, Nov. 2, 2014, in Pittsburgh. (AP Photo/Gene Puskar)
Colombian football fan Felipe Alvarez looks at the Atletico Nacional jersey tattoo --which he made in honor of footballer Andres Escobar-- during its making on October 9, 2010 at a studio in Medellin, Antioquia department, Colombia. AFP PHOTO/Raul ARBOLEDA (Photo credit should read RAUL ARBOLEDA/AFP/Getty Images)
In this May 8, 2014 photo, soccer fan Delneri Viana, 69, points to his Christ Redeemer with a Botafogo jersey tattoo in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Aside from the 83 and counting tattoos, the gray-haired man with a full, chalky mustache sports finger and toe nails painted in his team’s black and white colors. In fact, he never wears anything without the club’s emblem.(AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
PITTSBURGH - OCTOBER 07: A fan shows off his tattoo of Maxime Talbot #25 of the Pittsburgh Penguins during the game against the Philadelphia Flyers at the Consol Energy Center on October 7, 2010 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The Flyers defeated the Penguins 3-2. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
A San Francisco 49ers fan shows off his tattoo after the NFL football NFC Championship game against the Atlanta Falcons Sunday, Jan. 20, 2013, in Atlanta. The 49ers won 28-24 to advance to Super Bowl XLVII. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
25 May 2001: A fan of Shaquille O''Neal dared to tattoo 'I slept with Shaq' on his forehead. He received 2 floor seats from radio station Power 106 to game three of the western conference finals between the Los Angeles Lakers and the San Antonio Spurs at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. DIGITAL IMAGE. Mandatory Credit: Donald Miralle/Allsport.
A Brazil's Sao Paulo FC fan with his team's logo tattooed on his chest cheers before the Copa Sudamericana final soccer match against Argentina's Tigre in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
Buffalo Bills fan Joe Conaway shows his Bills tattoo on his leg signed by Bills' George Wilson during an NFL football training camp in Pittsford, N.Y., Saturday, July 30, 2011. (AP Photo/David Duprey)
FORT WORTH, TX - APRIL 13: A Fan shows his NASCAR tatoo during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series NRA 500 at Texas Motor Speedway on April 13, 2013 in Fort Worth, Texas. (Photo by Sean Gardner/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Wayne Ward of Boynton Beach, Fla., shows off his tattoo as he waits for the NFL Super Bowl XLIII football game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Arizona Cardinals, Sunday, Feb. 1, 2009, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
A Baltimore Ravens fan poses before the start of Super Bowl XLVII between the San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens on February 3, 2013 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans. AFP PHOTO/TIMOTHY A. CLARY (Photo credit should read TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)
Parish priest Juan Gabriel Arias shows a tatoo depicting an image of Christ holding the Racing football Club shield at the parish church Natividad de Maria, which is also painted with the colors of the football team in Buenos Aires on November 27, 2014. The priest became member of the executive committee of the Racing Club after receiving authorization of Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio now Pope Francis. AFP PHOTO / Maxi Failla (Photo credit should read Maxi Failla/AFP/Getty Images)
A tattooed Brazilian supporter stands outside The Castelao Stadium in Fortaleza on June 17, 2014, ahead of the Group A football match between Brazil and Mexico during the 2014 FIFA World Cup. AFP PHOTO / YURI CORTEZ (Photo credit should read YURI CORTEZ/AFP/Getty Images)
LOUDON, NH - JULY 14: A race fan displays her tattoo during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Camping World RV Sales 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on July 14, 2013 in Loudon, New Hampshire. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
WEST BROMWICH, UNITED KINGDOM - MARCH 15: A Leicester City fan shows his support to the club with a tattoo of his club during the Coca-Cola Championship match between West Bromwich Albion and Leicester City at the Hawthorns on March 15, 2008 in West Bromwich, England. (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)
A fan of late Italian rider Marco Simoncelli shows her tatoo during the qualifying practice of the San Marino Moto Grand Prix on September 15, 2012 at the Misano world circuit in Missano Adriatico. Simoncelli died after an accident during the 2011 Malaysian Grand Prix at Sepang on 23 October 2011. AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS (Photo credit should read GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - OCTOBER 20: Oakland Raiders fans, including one with a full chest tatoo, watch warmups before he game with the Kansas City Chiefs on October 20, 2003 at Network Associates Coliseum in Oakland, California. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 2: Dallas Cowboys fan Tom Lundo (R) of Wooddale, Illinois, walks past a Chicago Bears fan outside Soldier Field in Chicago 02 September. Lundo sports a permanent tattoo of Dallas quarterback Troy Aikman roping former Bears quarterback Jim McMahon. (Photo credit should read TIM ZIELENBACH/AFP/Getty Images)
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