Dario Šarić, dubbed the Warriors’ second-best player by fans this season, has earned an unprecedented amount of nicknames over his seven-year NBA career. As the internet’s Dario Šarić stan, I’m here to guide you — and to help you decide when you should call Dario ‘the Homie’ or when ‘Stepback ŠiŠi’ is more fitting.
Origin: Dario’s dad
Popularized by: Dario’s coaches and teammates in Croatia (per Crosports_ on Twitter, 2016)
Hey, listen, if I could, I’d just insert the war flashbacks meme here. I couldn’t find much on the origins of this enigmatic moniker, but it seems to stretch back to Dario’s father’s time playing pro ball in Croatia in the 80s. ŠiŠi Jr., having made the NBA and spent 7 years as a solid 6th man, is doing a much better job of bringing honor to the ŠiŠi name.
Origin: a 2014 tweet by Joel Embiid, in which he stated he was in Spain to watch ‘the homie Dario”
Popularized by: Sixers media, Sixers fans
The Sixers have a bit of a habit of giving their star players matching nicknames. From Allen Iverson (the Answer) to Joel Embiid (the Process) to Tyrese Maxey (the Franchise), their theming has been on point. Dario, the 12th pick in the 2014 draft, a two-time FIBA Young European Player of the Year, and the 2014 Adriatic League MVP, was shaping up to be a star — or at least the next in a long line of abstract noun nicknames. Add 2016 1st overall pick Ben Simmons, dubbed ‘the Fresh Prince,’ and you have a big three.
If you watch old Sixers highlights from 2016 through 2018, you’ll often hear commentator Marc Zumoff cheering on the Homie — more than he mentions the Process or the Fresh Prince by their nicknames.
Obviously, these hopes of a homegrown big three didn’t stick. However, ‘the Homie’ stuck around, and is now listed on Dario’s Basketball Reference page.
Popularized by: any even mildly pop-culture-savvy fans
Variations: Dario Party, Super Dario Ballers (nicknames for the Suns’ bench mob from 2020 through 2023)
Clearly, this nickname is inspired by the Super Mario Bros. video games by Nintendo, which have been a cultural staple since the 1980s. In 2017, Dario stated that he likes this nickname better than The Homie, but clearly, the fans have spoken.
Origin: Dario’s Instagram account
Popularized by: Dario
It’s well known that Dario Šarić is a huge fan of sharks. It’s even mentioned on his Wikipedia page. The Sixers banked on this more than any other team he’s played for, routinely animating CGI sharks over his highlights and even editing him into the movie poster for Sharknado.
In 2020, when asked about his Instagram handle, megalodon20 for a Suns quarantine mailbag series, Dario had this to say:
“I really like sharks. Back in the day I watched all the movies about sharks... I just stuck with that name. It’s not like I feel like a big shark. I’m not going to eat people.”
Thanks, Dario! That’s totally not ominous at all.
Stepback ŠiŠi / Darpshooter
Origin: lisco_2000, 2021
Popularized by: fans on NBA Twitter
You really thought I’d make it through a DarioWatch without having to cite myself? One lesson I’ve learned during my many, many years of causing and mediating chaos on the internet is that the things you do online often have an impact you’ll never know about, whether that’s for better or for worse. That’s the case with Stepback ŠiŠi, the nickname I coined as a bored college freshman in 2021 with nothing better to do than spend all day on Twitter posting about my favorite NBA player. This nickname comes from Dario’s skills as a sharpshooting big man, which began to flourish during the 2020-21 season. Anyway, to this day, any time someone refers to Dario by the nickname Stepback ŠiŠi, there’s somebody else in the replies calling him the Darpshooter. The Darpshooter comes from a common misspelling of ‘Dario’ as “Daro” or “Darp.” Stepback ŠiŠi and the Darpshooter are yin and yang, fire and ice, light and dark, good and evil, the forces that... what am I supposed to be talking about, again?
Anyway... next time Dario nails a clutch three, remember to choose your side wisely. Was that Stepback ŠiŠi or the Darpshooter?
darpshooter— Sam Metcalfe (@thesmetcalfe) November 7, 2023
Origin: lisco_2000, 2019
Popularized by: NBA Twitter
Variations: Sharky, Dario Sharkic, Shark
Remember what I said about your actions on the internet having an impact beyond your scope?
In 2019, I bought a BLÅHAJ shark plushie at IKEA. I created an NBA Twitter stan account for Dario Šarić and named it DarioSharkic, because of Dario’s aforementioned love of sharks, featuring the plushie as my profile photo and ‘Sharky’ as my display name. This account grew to 3000 followers by the beginning of 2021, and it got to the point where popular NBA art account NBA Paint created a visual representation of the account’s username for my 19th birthday.
That account is now lost to time, but the nickname prevails. Maddy, a Suns fan, said on Twitter that she had no idea the nickname was even linked to a stan account by the same name, and that it’s become enigmatic due to Dario’s love of sharks.
Origin: an October 2023 video by FlightReacts, a popular streamer and Warriors fan
Popularized by: Warriors fans, especially younger fans on platforms like TikTok and Real
FlightReacts is a content creator who needs no introduction if you’ve been hanging out in online NBA fandom over the past decade. He’s known for his extreme fandom of Steph Curry (so inspirational!) and his devotion to the Warriors, among other things, including presenting himself as so unintelligent that fans wonder if it’s all a bit or if there’s really a guy who’s made it this far thinking he’d be able to emulate Ja Morant’s high-flying dunks ‘by June.’
Over the years, Flight has leaned into this characterization as the stupidest man on NBA YouTube, and will mispronounce players’ names to the point where many players end up with unusual and nonsensical nicknames. This all started with Giannis Antetokounmpo being dubbed ‘Akumpo’ in 2020, and after his signing in 2023, Dario Šarić has officially been dubbed ‘Sharpie’ by the YouTuber and his fans.
At the 2023 trade deadline, Flight referred to Dario as “an orange” when he was traded from the Suns to the Thunder. It’s good to see that his opinion on the sharpshooting big man has changed, as it has for many Warriors fans as Dario has stepped up during such a tumultuous season. After all, Dario was known to go off against the Warriors for a while during his time with the Suns, so it’s no surprise he knows the team’s weaknesses and how he can fill the gaps. As he continues to play his heart out for Golden State, we look forward to seeing which new nicknames develop.