The band Pearl Jam named itself after which NBA player?

The band Pearl Jam named itself after which NBA player?

Pearl Jam have been a popular rock band for over three decades. While many music fans know the band, many don’t know that they are named after an NBA player.

The group was formed in 1990 and is still active. They were originally known as Mookie Blaylock, a reference to an NBA player who was drafted in 1989. The band changed their name just a year after forming.

The group had several ties to Blaylock, who spent 13 seasons in professional league basketball. As well as being named after the player, the band’s debut album was called “Ten”, a reference to Blaylock’s jersey number.

At the time, Blaylock was a rookie drafted by the New Jersey Nets with the 12th overall pick. The 6-footer was a decent point guard and perimeter defender, who averaged 10.1 points, 4.2 assists and 1.6 steals per game during his rookie campaign.

Mookie Blaylock played 13 seasons in the NBA (Image via Getty Images)

When the band recorded their first song, it didn’t have a name. Coincidentally, the members saw a Blaylock basketball card and decided to name the band after him.

“Mookie was cool too, he didn’t chase us,” Pearl Jam member Jeff Ament said. “I actually got to meet him later and hang around a bit. We also did a Pearl Jam t-shirt with a picture of him on it. I guess we owe Mookie a lot.”

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Pearl Jam had no intention of using the name for long, just for the first tour. The group changed their name in March 1991, shortly after signing with Epic Records.

Mookie Blaylock’s NBA career

Blaylock had a respectable 13-year career in the NBA. He was named an All-Star in 1994 and led the league in steals per game for two straight seasons. Only Alvin Robertson, Magic Johnson, Allen Iverson and Chris Paul have achieved this impressive feat outside of him.

The point guard was an excellent perimeter defender, which is why he was selected to an All-Defensive team six times.

Pearl Jam was named after a 13-year-old NBA veteran (Image via Getty Images)

In his second season in the league, the Nets guard has increased his averages across the board. He finished the 1990-91 season averaging 14.1 points, 6.1 assists and 2.3 steals.

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Blaylock still holds several records for the Atlanta Hawks, including most 3-pointers made with 1,050.

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