Photo Edits by Travis Wilker
This whole idea just started as a joke conversation between me and my buddies Huston and Alek. The Fate of the Furious was just about to come out, and the NBA season was in full swoon, so for some reason we started having multiple conversations determining which NBA player was which Fast & Furious character. The following is based on those conversations. Since the NBA playoffs are starting right now (Go Jazz!) I figured it was finally time to write this. Unfortunately we just couldn’t come up with NBA players that would fit in our cast for Mia and Gisele, and that’s our bad. But hopefully the other choices we made are fun.
Dominic Toretto – LeBron James
The best can only be played by the best. LeBron is the greatest of all time in my opinion, so only he could claim the central role of team leader Dominic Toretto. Only Toretto could drag his team to 7 straight NBA finals. Almost every film in the franchise has him pretty much single-handedly dragging his team – sorry, family – to victory in the final act.
Brian O’Conner – Kevin Love
If we’re going by the assumption that LeBron is Dom, then Kevin Love is definitely Brian O’Conner. I’m still not past Paul Walker’s death, so this is all we’re going to say for this one.
Letty – Dwayne Wade
LeBron would definitely jump off a moving car across a bridge to catch Dwayne Wade and then crash into the windshield of another car without a scratch on either of them. When asked about it later, how he knew a car would be there to break their fall, LeBron would definitely say “Sometimes you just gotta take a leap of faith.”
Tej – Kyrie Irving
Every year Kyrie develops a new skill, and every movie Tej develops a new skill. Kyrie has improved his skill set year to year, this year adding effort on defense as a new skill. Tej has had a similar growth, expanding his skill set film to film. At first Tej was just an ace mechanic, then all of the sudden he’s a computer hacker genius who can also fight. Also, Tej seems like the most likely candidate to consider that the earth might be flat.
Han – Ray Allen
Ray Allen was great on his Supersonics and Bucks teams as a leader, but he really found his niche as a 3rd option/6th man on championship winning Celtics and Heat teams. Likewise, Han was great as a central character in Tokyo Drift but really found his niche as part of the team in the future films. Sidenote, Han is the most important character in the franchise.
Hobbs – Rudy Gobert
There’s a part in Fast Five where Hobbs instructs law enforcement to “stay the fuck out of my way” which is pretty much what Gobert says to players trying to drive through the lane towards the basket. Only Gobert can match Hobbs intensity in the post. I would like to think that Hobbs would be impenetrable in the paint as well.
Roman Pierce – Dion Waiters
This one should explain itself if you are literate in both Fast & Furious and NBA. Both are lovable characters constantly wanting to be the focus of attention and be in charge, both are the posterboys of irrational confidence. One of my favorite parts of Furious 7 is when Roman is complaining about wanting to be the one who comes up with a plan, so when they finally let him come up with one he stutters and hesitates and then comes up with sky-diving cars. It’s beautiful. One of my favorite moments in NBA history was when Dion Waiters hit a long 3 to win a game against the Warriors in 2017, then immediately hit the pose pictured above. Dion Waiters would definitely draw up a gameplan like sky-diving cars if given the chance to. Just trust me, they are the same person.
Deckard Shaw – Russell Westbrook
Only Westbrook can match the ferocity of Deckard Shaw, both went on historic streaks of vengeance that defined them. Also I just really want to see Russell Westbrook fight off a bunch of guys on a plane while holding a baby.
Little Nobody – Dwight Howard
The best possible outcome for having Scott Eastwood in your film is that he doesn’t totally ruin it. Likewise, the best possible outcome for having Dwight Howard on your team is that he doesn’t totally ruin it. I mean look, the photo of the two of them was ruined, it made my point for me.
Mr. Nobody – Pat Riley
Mr. Nobody is a figure of mystery and endless swagger, convincing Dom and his team to go on insane missions for him. Pat Riley is a figure of mystery and endless swagger, convincing multiple star players to come play for him by throwing all his rings on the table. Pat Riley is Mr. Nobody.