PDA

View Full Version : Would a prominent athlete be criticized for publicly converting to Islam?



Fresno
09-24-2011, 03:13 PM
Kinda serious topic.

Lets just say for example a guy like Derrick Rose publicly announced his conversion to Islam and adopted the name "Ismail Majid-Abdullah. That could go for any other prominent marketable athlete right now to do such a thing in todays times.

Would it hurt his popularity amongst "casual" NBA fans? marketability with major companies?

This came up because 40 years ago Lew Alcindor changed his name to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, despite being one of the biggest stars in the sport. Apparently then in 1971 nobody criticized him for it, and his name change was respected as more of a spiritual thing than a controversial political statement. I mean Cassius Clay did it when he changed his name to Muhammad Ali.

-Kobe24-TJ19-
09-24-2011, 03:18 PM
leBron should do that:laugh2:

Oh boy he would be the most hated man in the entire world

Fresno
09-24-2011, 03:18 PM
To be honest I wouldnt really care if an athlete did such a thing because I dont view players by their religion. I'd only care if they are good at what they do.

I mean Shaq & Hakeem Olajuwon are Muslim, but when they became famous it was a lot different than things are now and nobody really paid it any mind. They just viewed them as great players.



Im just saying from a view from a larger spectrum in America, would it hurt their image?

MiamiWadeCounty
09-24-2011, 03:19 PM
The answer is yes.

Fresno
09-24-2011, 03:25 PM
leBron should do that:laugh2:

Oh boy he would be the most hated man in the entire world
:laugh2:

LeBron finding his faith after a Game 6 loss and becoming "Karim Hussein".

I'd have even more respect for him for having the heart to do that but I can only picture the media frenzy that would follow.

It'd be Breaking News on Fox News.
All of the conservative radio pundits ripping him.
Front-page of CNN
24/7 coverage on ESPN.
TMZ/MediaTakeout claiming its because he wants to marry 10 groupies.

It would be crazy.

Sportfan
09-24-2011, 03:29 PM
I would praise him just for speaking out for it

sjbirds
09-24-2011, 03:29 PM
not a major superstar but he was a good college player and decent nba player chris jackson did it. changed his name to Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf only time it was a problem was when he wouldnt stand for the national anthem

Fresno
09-24-2011, 03:48 PM
not a major superstar but he was a good college player and decent nba player chris jackson did it. changed his name to Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf only time it was a problem was when he wouldnt stand for the national anthem

I remember him. So did Tariq Abdul-Wahad.

Both of them ended up out the league quick tho.:confused:

njnets
09-24-2011, 04:11 PM
i think it would be a problem for a lot of people. for me, no. but i imagine many people would be against it since 9/11 ever happened.

i dont think it should be a problem, but i think it would be a problem.

sjbirds
09-24-2011, 04:28 PM
I remember him. So did Tariq Abdul-Wahad.

Both of them ended up out the league quick tho.:confused:

haha yeah but not because of who the were but because of skill or injury. both in their last couple of years in the nba couldnt stay healthy.

PrettyBoyJ
09-24-2011, 04:39 PM
I don't think it would be as controversial as some may think.. Yea they'll have some closet haters who won't go public with their dislikes, but sports is kinda the only place where race, or religion doesn't matter (or shouldn't) and it could open the door to a new fan base.

LakersMaster24
09-24-2011, 04:49 PM
I think it would hurt the marketability of the player. I mean, if for example D-Rose changed his name to Ismail Majid-Abdullah, it would be pretty weird and just unnatural in some way? :confused: It is much easier to market a name like Derrick Rose, rather than Ismail Majid Abdullah.

I may be wrong however, because Kareem Abdul Jabbar is a world wide known name...but again, Kareem is a Top 3 player of All Time...so I don't know I don't know.

MTar786
09-24-2011, 05:07 PM
i dont think it would be such a big deal..

and as for the people sayin if lebron would do it hed be even more hated? speak for yoursleves.. because i would like him if he did... that displays the higest power of character.. and that is self respect and standing up for what you believe in no matter what anyone thinks.. i hate lebron.. but id see his character in a new light if told the world he believes in a religion and doesnt care what people may think.. i would respect him in the same way if he became a jew and changed his name to chaim lol

BranWingss
09-24-2011, 05:29 PM
I actually had to research Islam for a school project and really hated going through all of these names. I think it would hurt the player, and of course the jersey sales.

Fresno
09-24-2011, 05:31 PM
haha yeah but not because of who the were but because of skill or injury. both in their last couple of years in the nba couldnt stay healthy.

Chris Jackson aka Mahmoud Abdul Rauf is 42 and still balling overseas.

It literally is crazy how they dont even talk about him for his college numbers. 30 PPG? Ridiculous.

dtmagnet
09-24-2011, 05:38 PM
Yes they definitely would.

topdog
09-24-2011, 06:00 PM
I think it would hurt the marketability of the player. I mean, if for example D-Rose changed his name to Ismail Majid-Abdullah, it would be pretty weird and just unnatural in some way? :confused: It is much easier to market a name like Derrick Rose, rather than Ismail Majid Abdullah.

I may be wrong however, because Kareem Abdul Jabbar is a world wide known name...but again, Kareem is a Top 3 player of All Time...so I don't know I don't know.

I get what your saying. In some ways, a great player is going to be recognized and get publicity regardless, but marketability is about accessibility and that means a name that is familiar and easy to say (something Kareem didn't originally have) and a person that you can identitfy with. Some may not be able to identify with a religion they really are ignorant about.

MJ-BULLS
09-24-2011, 06:10 PM
There Is No Way, Derrick Rose changes his name. :laugh2:

naps
09-24-2011, 06:32 PM
No one should be criticized for changing a religion. After all religion is all about belief. A belief can change any given time. There is something called freedom of religion. But it's unfortunate that they will get a criticized regardless. And if LeBron happened to convert to Islam, well, I think this country will come to end. Media will love that and it'll be continually scrutinized for no reason. Oh and Skip Bayless :facepalm:

shep33
09-24-2011, 06:42 PM
Sadly it would, because Islam gets an unfair bad rep. We live in a sad world of unjust revenge and collective punishment. The 3000 people that died on Sept. 11, was an American tragedy... RIP to all the victims.

Unfortunately, we invade a nation (Iraq) based on inaccurate intel and kill hundreds of thousands. Think about that for a second, hundreds of thousands dead, millions displaced. Pretty sad.

Anways, that being said, perhaps the most famous athlete in history who was known to just about the entire globe was a man who converted to Islam. Muhammad Ali.

MTar786
09-24-2011, 07:13 PM
Sadly it would, because Islam gets an unfair bad rep. We live in a sad world of unjust revenge and collective punishment. The 3000 people that died on Sept. 11, was an American tragedy... RIP to all the victims.

Unfortunately, we invade a nation (Iraq) based on inaccurate intel and kill hundreds of thousands. Think about that for a second, hundreds of thousands dead, millions displaced. Pretty sad.

Anways, that being said, perhaps the most famous athlete in history who was known to just about the entire globe was a man who converted to Islam. Muhammad Ali.

GREAT post :clap:

MTar786
09-24-2011, 07:17 PM
hakeem
kareem
shareef abdurahim
rasheed wallace
shaq
abdul-rauf
abdul-wahad

these guy were ALL fan favorites.
yes, there is a discrimination towards islam.. but i think it gets overblown at times. people dont judge muslims as much as they think.. my only concern is for the people who are ignorant that do judge.. when infact they know nothing about the religion

Spiggity_ace
09-24-2011, 07:19 PM
probably because the world seems to think muslims are evil, and u better believe fox sports would try to destroy that player

Bruno
09-24-2011, 07:25 PM
No. Shaq did it nobody cared.

Sly Guy
09-24-2011, 08:18 PM
I don't think they'd allow it. The increased travel time due to paranoid security checks would throw off the team's schedule.

six
09-24-2011, 08:39 PM
leBron should do that:laugh2:

Oh boy he would be the most hated man in the entire world
He would do a 1 hour special on ESPN for his "decision" of converting to Islam. :p

On a serious note, If Lebron converted to Islam I would greatly respect him.

bagwell368
09-24-2011, 09:24 PM
I was around for Ali. He was hated (by the establishment), but because he wouldn't serve in 'Nam. People didn't really understand the religious angle very much, but that was a secondary issue from where I sat.

Jabbar was very quiet as a person, there were a few ignorant comments after the change, but, within a few years it was only perhaps some yahoos that had anything to say

The conversions got even more common later, and I don't think it got much attention for the most part - which is a good thing IMO. I think 9/11 may have changed some things. But I'm not even sure many get the separation between The Nation of Islam and Traditional Islam - and how they feel about it.

Anilyzer
09-24-2011, 09:31 PM
Kinda serious topic.

Lets just say for example a guy like Derrick Rose publicly announced his conversion to Islam and adopted the name "Ismail Majid-Abdullah. That could go for any other prominent marketable athlete right now to do such a thing in todays times.

Would it hurt his popularity amongst "casual" NBA fans? marketability with major companies?

This came up because 40 years ago Lew Alcindor changed his name to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, despite being one of the biggest stars in the sport. Apparently then in 1971 nobody criticized him for it, and his name change was respected as more of a spiritual thing than a controversial political statement. I mean Cassius Clay did it when he changed his name to Muhammad Ali.

Well, in general I would say that it definitely wouldn't help.

And yeah... in the 70's or whatever when Kareem switched over, there was kind of a multi-cultural hipster vibe to that probably, and a lot of people probably thought it was cool.

Since then muslim countries seem to have waged a VERY effective PR campaign to show how intolerant and uber-conservative (burkas, women not allowed to drive, etc) they are. And then there's the whole terrorism thing. All in all this unfortunately makes converting to Islam kind of a "less cool" thing in America in terms of PR and popularity. Also, according to the rules, once you convert to Islam, it then becomes a mortal sin (apostasy) to "un-convert", which is technically punishable by death in Islamic countries.

Also, since America is a hyper Christian country, with like 50% or more intensely believing that "Jeebus cometh from the sky, and soon" etc, then it probably REALLY wouldn't go over that well here, at least if it was very publicized. This is generally because both of those religions (christianity and islam) are both really clear on the idea that their way is the only, true, certified-by-god, true religion. So... yeah.

However, as far as I'm concerned, I wouldn't really care either way. I mean, personally I would think it was cooler if Derrick Rose joined a huge UFO cult or something, and spoke everyday to reporters after games about his devotion to "Lord ZagaMixnu" of Planet Krypton or something. Now, THAT would be cool. But yeah... if somebody wants to be a certain religion, or they suddenly start believing something, then it is their American freedom to follow their religion with total freedom, and we should all just let them. It's totally uncool to hate on people for their religion.

Aside from Islam, a player could also consider switching to Scientology, Mormonism, Tibetan Buddhism, Amish. I think Americans are all cool with different religions--the only problem seems to be when people start calling out other religions, condemning and threatening them, etc etc. That kind of intolerance is the real problem, and ironically seems to come from rival religious groups themselves.

America has freedom of religion guaranteed in the constitution.

Kyle N.
09-25-2011, 12:41 AM
LeBron James got criticized for signing a contract with another team.

Seriously though, I don't think people would really care. If it was somebody like Obama, I think a lot of people would care. I wouldn't but others would.

JasonJohnHorn
09-25-2011, 12:44 AM
I remember this one guy, Lew Alcinder, changed his name, and nobody's heard from him since. Oh, and they havent put up his statue yet in LA, and he is P!$$ED!!!

JasonJohnHorn
09-25-2011, 12:47 AM
All kidding aside, many believe is has hurt some career. Chris Jackson, aka Sharif Abdul Raheem, Craig Hodges, and Brian Williams, aka Bison Dele.

In the post 9/11 America, I think it weighs down on athletes than it did before hand. When Hakeem played, he was a freakishly atheletic big guy with sweet post moves who boarded like a beast and fasted one month out of the year for a religion relatively few people were familiar with, now he would be seen by a vocal and ignorant minority as being 'one of them' or 'the enemy'. These are things guys like Ali and Kareem didn't have to deal with when they converted, but other players, with lesser talent, have had a hard go at it BEFORE 9/11, I imagine i would be even harder now.

JasonJohnHorn
09-25-2011, 12:51 AM
No. Shaq did it nobody cared.

See... I didnt even know this. Though he didnt change his name.

sjbirds
09-25-2011, 09:12 AM
All kidding aside, many believe is has hurt some career. Chris Jackson, aka Sharif Abdul Raheem, Craig Hodges, and Brian Williams, aka Bison Dele.

In the post 9/11 America, I think it weighs down on athletes than it did before hand. When Hakeem played, he was a freakishly atheletic big guy with sweet post moves who boarded like a beast and fasted one month out of the year for a religion relatively few people were familiar with, now he would be seen by a vocal and ignorant minority as being 'one of them' or 'the enemy'. These are things guys like Ali and Kareem didn't have to deal with when they converted, but other players, with lesser talent, have had a hard go at it BEFORE 9/11, I imagine i would be even harder now.

not the same person...

six
09-25-2011, 10:06 AM
In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

I doubt the majority of Christian Americans would care if a high profiled NBA player converted to Islam. The similarities of Christianity and Islam are so profound, it's hard to hate on this religion or the people who embrace it.

Both believe in Jesus, even though Muslims believe Jesus is a prophet instead of God/son of God. Both believe in heaven and hell, in one God, and both even believe that Jesus will return to earth for the second coming. There are so many similarities that I wouldn't be able to put them in one post.

Muslims believe the Bible is from God, but they also believe the Quran is the final revelation, and that Muhammad is the final prophet coming from a long line of prophets, Moses, Noah, etc. They believe the Quran is pure and unaltered by mankind.

AllKohn
09-25-2011, 10:41 AM
Did you forget Chris jackson or Machmud Abdul Rauf who not only changed to Islam but refused to stand for the national anthem? The short answer is yes it would hurt his endorsements and marketability but so would joining nambla or getting a tattoo on his face.

Fresno
09-25-2011, 10:50 AM
hakeem
kareem
shareef abdurahim
rasheed wallace
shaq
abdul-rauf
abdul-wahad

these guy were ALL fan favorites.
yes, there is a discrimination towards islam.. but i think it gets overblown at times. people dont judge muslims as much as they think.. my only concern is for the people who are ignorant that do judge.. when infact they know nothing about the religion

No, you're stretching that too far. Neither guy was a fan favorite at all, espescially Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf following that National Anthem thing.

You're also forgetting Hedo, Semih Erden, Omer Asik, & Nazr Mohammed.

Fresno
09-25-2011, 10:55 AM
No. Shaq did it nobody cared.

Shaq's mother is Baptist, his step-father converted to NOI.

Shaq's never touched on being "Muslim" nor following any of the faith in his daily life. The only thing I can get on him is a comment he made to Hedo following a game & Semih Erden upon meeting him.

Its a lot different than him converting in the middle of his career, which is probably why he keeps that part of his personal life a secret instead of everything else.

raiderfaninTX
09-25-2011, 10:57 AM
no I doubt it

now if he converts and then wants to live his life under sharia law then he would be deservingly bashed.

Fresno
09-25-2011, 11:07 AM
All kidding aside, many believe is has hurt some career. Chris Jackson, aka Sharif Abdul Raheem, Craig Hodges, and Brian Williams, aka Bison Dele.

In the post 9/11 America, I think it weighs down on athletes than it did before hand. When Hakeem played, he was a freakishly atheletic big guy with sweet post moves who boarded like a beast and fasted one month out of the year for a religion relatively few people were familiar with, now he would be seen by a vocal and ignorant minority as being 'one of them' or 'the enemy'. These are things guys like Ali and Kareem didn't have to deal with when they converted, but other players, with lesser talent, have had a hard go at it BEFORE 9/11, I imagine i would be even harder now.


This. I agree with this 100%.

Shareef Abdur Rahim is a different person tho, not Chris Jackson(Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf).

ugafan
09-25-2011, 12:16 PM
Shaq's mother is Baptist, his step-father converted to NOI.

Shaq's never touched on being "Muslim" nor following any of the faith in his daily life. The only thing I can get on him is a comment he made to Hedo following a game & Semih Erden upon meeting him.

Its a lot different than him converting in the middle of his career, which is probably why he keeps that part of his personal life a secret instead of everything else.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0PM_ipBEWc0

basketfan4life
09-26-2011, 03:25 AM
As a Muslim, i've got to tell this story,

People who believe in Muhammed when he was alive, tries to run away from getting killed by the citizens of Mekke(the city where Islam born) they finally arrive to Habesistan(a Christian country) people of Habesistan wants them to be killed, the king of Habesistan talks to them before deciding what to do to them, he says "tell me what your book Quran says about Jesus" and the slaves start to tell the story about Jesus from Quran,when they finish the king draws a very thin line to the sand with his stick and says "your religion and our religion has a difference that is as thin as this line, i can't kill these people" and lets them stay in his country as long as they want.

What i'm trying to say is, there should be no problem between people with different religions, all these corparate machines, goverments, terrorists kill each other, sell guns, earn money, be rich and all of us live in a blind hate against each other because of these blood sucking, evil ,murderers...

The day we stop hating on each other, the day when we stop critisizing an athlete for changing his name or religion is the day these evils go down and set human beings free...

basketfan4life
09-26-2011, 03:25 AM
As a Muslim, i've got to tell this story,

People who believe in Muhammed when he was alive, tries to run away from getting killed by the citizens of Mekke(the city where Islam born) they finally arrive to Habesistan(a Christian country) people of Habesistan wants them to be killed, the king of Habesistan talks to them before deciding what to do to them, he says "tell me what your book Quran says about Jesus" and the slaves start to tell the story about Jesus from Quran,when they finish the king draws a very thin line to the sand with his stick and says "your religion and our religion has a difference that is as thin as this line, i can't kill these people" and lets them stay in his country as long as they want.

What i'm trying to say is, there should be no problem between people with different religions, all these corparate machines, goverments, terrorists kill each other, sell guns, earn money, be rich and all of us live in a blind hate against each other because of these blood sucking, evil ,murderers...

The day we stop hating on each other, the day when we stop critisizing an athlete for changing his name or religion is the day these evils go down and set human beings free...

Sactown
09-26-2011, 12:15 PM
Yes it would obviously hurt them as far as the fans go... I feel they should just keep those kinda things to themselves..

Heediot
09-26-2011, 12:29 PM
Kinda serious topic.

Lets just say for example a guy like Derrick Rose publicly announced his conversion to Islam and adopted the name "Ismail Majid-Abdullah. That could go for any other prominent marketable athlete right now to do such a thing in todays times.

Would it hurt his popularity amongst "casual" NBA fans? marketability with major companies?

This came up because 40 years ago Lew Alcindor changed his name to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, despite being one of the biggest stars in the sport. Apparently then in 1971 nobody criticized him for it, and his name change was respected as more of a spiritual thing than a controversial political statement. I mean Cassius Clay did it when he changed his name to Muhammad Ali.

Yes people would do anything for ratings or viewers or sales.

smith&wesson
09-26-2011, 12:52 PM
religion is a faith not a political statement. i beleive a person can beleive in whatever they want to beleive in. if you judge that person based on ignorance you probably need god more then he or she does.

Da Knicks
09-26-2011, 01:52 PM
As a Muslim, i've got to tell this story,

People who believe in Muhammed when he was alive, tries to run away from getting killed by the citizens of Mekke(the city where Islam born) they finally arrive to Habesistan(a Christian country) people of Habesistan wants them to be killed, the king of Habesistan talks to them before deciding what to do to them, he says "tell me what your book Quran says about Jesus" and the slaves start to tell the story about Jesus from Quran,when they finish the king draws a very thin line to the sand with his stick and says "your religion and our religion has a difference that is as thin as this line, i can't kill these people" and lets them stay in his country as long as they want.

What i'm trying to say is, there should be no problem between people with different religions, all these corparate machines, goverments, terrorists kill each other, sell guns, earn money, be rich and all of us live in a blind hate against each other because of these blood sucking, evil ,murderers...

The day we stop hating on each other, the day when we stop critisizing an athlete for changing his name or religion is the day these evils go down and set human beings free...


:clap: I agree with you 100%, people who hate are the ones that are wrong not the people that are trying to better themselves. No one knows what the right religion is so it is total b.s. to judge someone on something that know one knows for sure who is wrong and who is right. saying that many people on psd need to quit hating on Melo...it drives me crazy psd has him barely cracking the top 10 player ranking...lol

smith&wesson
09-26-2011, 02:36 PM
:clap: I agree with you 100%, people who hate are the ones that are wrong not the people that are trying to better themselves. No one knows what the right religion is so it is total b.s. to judge someone on something that know one knows for sure who is wrong and who is right. saying that many people on psd need to quit hating on Melo...it drives me crazy psd has him barely cracking the top 10 player ranking...lol

all relegions are "right" or positive. all religions preach wellness and guild you to a healthier and more rightious life.

relegion doesnt devide ppl. it guids them. its ppl who devide themselves from one another. and its really sad but most of those ppl are not ppl like you and i . they are extreamists.

Fresno
09-26-2011, 04:34 PM
religion is a faith not a political statement. i beleive a person can beleive in whatever they want to beleive in. if you judge that person based on ignorance you probably need god more then he or she does.

Good stuff.:clap:

Hawkeye15
09-26-2011, 05:14 PM
the answer is no. Our country is so PC at this point, it would never happen. Not that it should, I am simply stating it wouldn't happen.