You don’t get to pick your nickname

Doug MartinThe Tampa Bay Buccaneers have a running back on their roster.  His name is Doug Martin.

A few years ago, Martin looked like he might be the tailback of the future.  In 2012, his rookie season, Martin played in all sixteen games and rushed for nearly 1500 yards.  Fantasy football owners scrambled to draft him once news broke that the Bucs had found their man.  A late first round pick for Tampa Bay, Martin had become a steal.

Then reality set in.  He played in only 17 games the next two years, not coming close to amassing the yards he did in his rookie season.  He rushed for 45 yards a game last year.  Three years ago, he was averaging twice that.

This season, Martin will once again vie for the starting spot.  The only problem is he doesn’t like his nickname.

Somewhere along the lines, someone dubbed Martin the “Muscle Hamster.”  Personally when I first heard the nickname, I thought it fit.  Martin is 5’9” and 215 lbs., most of it muscle.  He runs low to the ground and, when on his game, is a bear to bring down.  Not to mention that he kind of looks like a hamster.  So muscle hamster stuck.

Except he doesn’t like it.  He’s been trying to shed the nickname for years now and it just won’t go away.  I get that the Muscle Hamster isn’t a cool nickname like the Truth or the Answer or Sweetness but it’s still a nickname and it’s not all that bad… as long as Richard Gere doesn’t get a hold of you.

Years ago, they were trying to come up with a nickname for D-Wade.  He was quickly becoming a South Florida icon.  I forget who was putting that on, whether it was ESPN or the Miami Heat or the Miami Herald but they ended up settling on Flash, a name that his teammate Shaq had dubbed him.  The whole thing though just seemed contrived.  What’s wrong with just calling him D-Wade or better yet, Dwyane.  If the guy hasn’t been given a nickname after years of dominating high school, college and pro ball, then perhaps it just wasn’t meant to be.

Muscle Hamster Family GuyI have a message for Mr. Martin aka the Muscle Hamster.  Embrace your nickname.  You’re lucky we’re even talking about you in the first place.  The fact that you have a nickname means you’ve earned it.  It’s not derogatory.  It’s complimentary.  You’re like a jacked-up hamster in a cage running over everything in your way and the wheel just keeps on spinning.

Some guys go their entire lives without a nickname.  Be happy it’s not Dufus or Fatty or Dipshit or worse yet… unemployed.  DeMarcus Cousins’ nickname is Boogie and we don’t hear him complaining.  Worry less about your nickname and more those guys lined up against you trying to bring you down.

So suit up, earn your carries and get back to the form you were in back in 2012, muscle hamster.  Everything else will fall into place.

16 thoughts on “You don’t get to pick your nickname

  1. Doug Martin doesn’t like his nickname ? Imagine that . Consider if he’d been called a “bust” or just simply ‘ useless ‘ . I mean , when was the last time the Buccaneers had a running back of any real note ?

    The wheels on the Cavaliers’ bus have begun to fall off then . LBJ opts out of his contract and the likelihood of Kevin Love following suit. All of the fans buying into LeBron leading Cleveland to a title, because of the team he was surrounded by ? What the ###@ were they thinking ? Never mind the mindset of the front office and how the coaching staff was put together, behind a coach without an ounce of NBA experience . Fans in Cleveland could be in for another rude awakening if LeBron bolts elsewhere .

  2. The problem with his situation is he didn’t muscle up and kill off the nickname when it immediately surfaced. Indeed, he really had no choice now but to embrace it or ignore it. By letting just one person know he dislikes it, the thing will be on his freakin’ tombstone now. Good luck with that Doug…

  3. According to Deadspin… Doug Martin Hates “Muscle Hamster.” He’d Rather You Call Him “Dougernaut, Dougenator, Muscle And Hustle…Doug Is Fine, Also.”
    I kind of like Dougernaut… But spell it Dougornot… The Bucs will make that decision shortly… I understand the coaches really like 2nd year man Charles Sims… Maybe Doug should be called “Buttercup” as in…

  4. Al…

    Two questions for you.

    1) Does Doug Martin lead the Buccaneers in rushing yards from scrimmage by the end of the 2015 season?

    2) Within 100 yards, how many yards does he end up with?

    If I were to set that number at 750, would you take the over or the under?

  5. I read two articles that prompted this post, Burnsy.

    One was written two years ago. The other was written recently.

    Either these people have nothing better to write about or Martin really doesn’t like to be dubbed the Hamster.

  6. Muscle and Hustle, Dwin?

    Come on. I mean, did he make that up? That’s some stout shit to be calling someone. I was okay with Dougernaut but he needs to know Muscle Hamster is here to stay.

    Muscle and Hustle. Puh-ease.

    And you’re right about Sims. I’m hearing a lot of good about him too. Just waiting for it to translate onto the field of play on game days.

  7. My site name is Moose & I picked up the nickname in college some 30 years ago. I only weigh about 150 lbs – go figure. I don’t even remember why a friend started calling me that (probably because I was stoned most of the time) but it stuck. Martin should worry about his job not his nickname.

  8. Well, Dubstep, CHump derived from the combination of my first and last name, much like J-Dub.

    Besides, you and I both know, SportsChump is more than just me. It’s an ethos.

  9. Tophat wrote “The wheels on the Cavaliers’ bus have begun to fall off then . LBJ opts out of his contract and the likelihood of Kevin Love following suit.”

    Al,
    LBJ is coming back to Cleveland. He opted out to make room for the salary cap.

  10. Bets…

    And despite all the will he, won’t he, it looks like Love is coming back too.

    I wish they could sign Aldridge. Don’t they have the cap room? Are they not one of the teams he’s visiting?

  11. Shaq….Dude made up more nicknames than any athlete this side of Muhammad Ali. And yes, giving yourself a nickname is lame…Black Mamba was created by Kobe…Or Quentin Tarantino, depending on who you believe but the best nicknames are earned:
    Magic
    The Human Highlight Film
    Charlie Hustle
    The Great One
    Iron Mike

    And my favorite, because it was so earned…
    Big Game James

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