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Have you ever wondered how King James’ tattoos look like up-close? Here you’ll find out the meaning behind his ink in this complete timeline of all LeBron’s tattoos (with photographic evidence). You will also learn how they have changed during the course of his professional basketball career. It’s very difficult to break down all of Bron’s tattoos. If anyone has some additional information (for example meanings, background, close ups), please post a comment below, or contact us. Thanks!

LeBron has “CHOSEN1” tattooed on his back. Rumors that this tattoo was there when LeBron was born remain unconfirmed. Kidding aside, he got that after Sports Illustrated gave him the title on one of the covers, while he was still in High School.
LeBron’s first arm tattoo – seems like something hairy, wearing a crown, that would later be transformed into a more distinct lion-head.
In High School, he had to wear plasters to cover up his tattoos. School’s policy.
First NBA season – this is how King James came into the league. His lion-head logo got some new scripting – King (above) and James (below).
Also, his left arm has two tattoos – “Beast” and “Hold My Own”.
Not a lot changed over the first two years in the NBA. In his third NBA season LeBron shows off a new tattoo – “Price James” – in honor of LeBron Jr.’s first birthday.
2006 Playoffs – notice there’s no WITNESS logo at this point.
It’s difficult to catch LeBron w/o his jersey on. This photo was taken during the 2006 Fiba WCOB. He has a very small tattoo on his chest. Pictures are too small to determine what it reads. Update: According to L23 With Big Z it says “Gifted Child.”
After quite a successful 2006 Playoffs run, King James got a new tattoo on his leg. On his right calf is the word “Witness,” a reference to Nike’s famous campaign during the post-season.
Coming into his 4th NBA season LeBron tattoo’ed a large “330” on his right forearm. It’s a reference to his hometown – Akron – area code.
He got plenty of new tattoos in his 4th year, but at this point his right shoulder was clean from any ink.
Here’s the other side of his Akron tattoo. It says “No one can see through what i am except for the one that made me” in script inside an old unrolled paper script (thanks chris23). Also, notice a change in the “Hold My Own” left arm tattoo. Images of birds flying were added around this tattoo.
At this point LeBron didn’t have the “L” and “J” scripted on his triceps. He got that during his second NBA Playoffs appearance. See the next photo.
In the second round of the 2007 NBA Playoffs, during Cavaliers’ six days rest waiting for the next opponent, James got some new ink… “L” and “J” letters – his initials, of course – scripted on his triceps.
The new tattoo over the lion-head says “Gloria” in honor of Gloria James – LeBron’s mom. Additionally, notice two small tattoos on Bron’s hands. On his right hand there’s a K-J-1, which most likely means King James 1.0.
Here’s a close up of the 330 (Akron) tattoo on Bron’s right forearm.
Close up of “Gloria”.
During the summer, before joining the USA Basketball Training Camp, LeBron tattooed names of his second son – Bryce Maximus – of his left forearm.
Going into his fifth NBA season, LeBron modified the “Hold My Own” tattoo and his left biceps.
Above his right wrist, there’s yet another small tattoo. It is hard to interpret without a close up.
Another look at the Bryce Maximus tattoo on his left forearm, commemorating the birth of King James’ second son.
Right arm.
“L” & “J”.
Both arms – close up.
Sixth NBA season – LeBron comes in with some modifications on his left arm. The “Beast” is now surrounded with stars and the “Hold My Own” got some color.
The “Prince James” tattoo has been changed as well. There’s much more graphic in the background.
Back of his left forearm tattoo. Not sure what is says.
Close up of James’ lion/dragon thing chest tattoo. Photo taken during the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.
LeBron’s tattoos in full glory.
Witness close up.
Entering the 2009 NBA Playoffs LBJ was seen with a new tattoo during one of the practice sessions in the first round. Below the lion/dragon image on his chest there’s a “Family” written in script on the right side of his abdomen. Also, there seems to be something on the other side too – “Loyalty”. So far there are no pics.
Continuing his tradition of getting new tattoos before the NBA Playoffs, LeBron James returned from his one week rest / minor ankle injury on March 12th, 2010 with a new tattoo placed on his left and right bicep. Right arm reads “What we do in life” and the left follows… “echoes in eternity”. It is a quote form LeBron’s favorite movie – “Gladiator”.
On April 17th, 2010… in the first game of the 2010 NBA Playoffs, LeBron James sported not only a new pair of shoes, but also a new tattoo on his left leg. Matching the WITNESS tattoo on his right leg (see above), The King got himself HISTORY on the left. His message is now complete as it reads WITNESS HISTORY.
Here’s a detailed look at LeBron’s rib cage tattoos. Joining “Family” on the left side is “Loyalty” on the right side. It displays two of James’ five credos: Passion, Fearless, Tradition, Community, Family, Loyalty.
In 2013, after winning his second NBA championship, LeBron James decided to remind us all about his birthplace and the year he was born. He added two new tattoos on his collarbones. His right shoulder reads “Akron” and his left shoulder reads “Est. 1984”. Again, it’s difficult to catch LBJ shirtless, but when you’re doing a commercial on a beach in Miami… photographers will follow.
  • Lebron’s vert (45″) is far better than 35″…you must have gotten him confused with Kobe (36″). Stop downing people and find something positive to comment on.

  • Saylem Phillips

    LBJ is the best there is and ever will be! his dominance in every aspect of the game cannot be denied. I make sure i rep him wherever i go, the ring he earned this year is yet another testament of the superiority he has on the world in the sport of basketball, he’s the best and thats it! haterz welcome!!

  • Photo
  • dave

    Stupid. What you believe is in your heart. Writing it on your body just makes you look insecure.

  • kijak

    if he was white , he would’ve been michael scofield :P

  • I personally don’t like tattoos but to criticize somebody else for expressing themselves in their own way is just ridiculous.

  • supp


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  • his kids bdays 10/6 and 6/14

  • dsolo23456

    Lebron is the best in the game period but you Ohio fans fail to realize is that the greatest player in ball which is my top #1 player Jordan did have was a lot of off the court problems and yes he was a great role model but behind close doors and cameras out there face every player has a life or family as well. Lebron expresses his thoughts and feelings through ink. As which every player does but the meaning of his tattoos are something he has always felt, wanted, and loves. Think about it.

  • LeEric mims

    there’s a left out tattoo.situated at the upper left arm with unshaded stars

  • selfmadedude

    what a stupid comment.

  • Mr.WILL

    IAM a Lebron fan since he left Cleveland. And will always be a BIG LEBRON JAMES FAN FO LIFE

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  • Pacca

    Nice evolution of tattoos but what a knob! ‘Witness history’, ‘chosen 1’ and ‘LJ are ridiculous. Chosen 1, did superstars who have proven themselves like Wilt, Jordan and Russell make stupid statements with tatty or talent. They make the joke people write their names in their underwear in case they get hit by a bus but LJ on your arms is the next step of ‘if in case you find me return to…..’

  • OP123

    Seriously? Chosen 1 was given to him by Sports Illustrated, and Witness History was given to him by Nike! What does it matter what he decides to put on his body? If you seriously have a problem with him even getting his initials tatted on the backs of his arms, I really can’t take you seriously! Why can’t people leave all the greats from the past out of conversations like this where they were never even brought up until haters decide to start talking about them for no reason on articles that have nothing to do about them? LeBron fanatics might go overboard with the praise, but LeBron haters are just ridiculous! Lol.

  • OP123

    What a ridiculous statement! I’d really like to know what decisions you’ve made in your life so that people can judge you for no reason! Seriously, get out of here! Lol.

  • OP123

    Sports Illustrated gave him the nickname! He just decided to get it tatted on his back! Why do you have a problem with that? Lol.

  • OP123

    There’s plenty of legitimate haters, but you’re obviously just a troll! There’s no other explanation for such an ignorant and uneducated answer! Lol.

  • OP123

    You’re seriously just going to judge him off of the tattoos on his body? Get a life! Lol.

  • OP123

    LeBron and his back-to-back championships make it seem like it was a good decision for him! By the way, I don’t understand why you even associated that number with LeBron more than MJ even if you’re a native of Ohio! That’s your problem right there! Lol.

  • Everything we do echoes an eternity

  • Garrison

    Ink has nothing to do with how great of a player LBJ is. Even still, Jordan has ink. Don’t be stupid.

  • jake lattimore

    like the gladiator quot ” what we do in life echoes an enternity tatoo

  • damarcusbrown

    best basketball player of all time hands down no offense but lebron has one uped jordan

  • nylka maria

    ugly ass bitch

  • panthertron

    you’re a fucking idiot.

  • Nasty Jerz

    Shaq is littered in tats like LBJ and Kobe has tats on his right arm. Ink doesn’t equate to greatness

  • Jordan Lewis

    Dude NOBODY gets tattoos f https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/a6daec75d46066ca0f2a5741d3a4f1ce060dcd6505dba09df77337952eed7e18.jpg or the hell of it with no reason, EVERY tat that ANYBODY has ever got meant something to them at a specific time;….

    Maybe you didn’t understand the reason, but that doesn’t mean there wasn’t a reason;…