San Francisco 49ers safety Donte Whitner is legally changing his name
to "Hitner," in a form of protest against the NFL's fines for various in-game tackles.
It's official...The W is being removed from my last name from Whitner to Hitner...GM
— DonteHitner (@DonteWhitner) October 2, 2013
He told the media in Houston that he was already in the process of making it official:
"I actually put the paperwork in yesterday afternoon. Just waiting to get the paperwork out, so from here on out until I retire, my name will be Donte Hitner, without the W."
I'm not sure he thought this through all the way, since it really sounds like a bad Hitler joke waiting to happen. But he says he has pretty noble reasons behind it.
"This is a tough game. This is a game for grown men. When we signed up for that, we all know that. If you don't want to play football, you don't want to be physical, you don't want to be hit, don't come around guys that like to hit. That's the game of football, just do it the right way. You can continue to look at me, but if I'm doing it the right way, what can you do?"
Whitner will have to purchase all the remaining merchandise with his name on it if he wants to change his name mid-season, but really... how many Donte Whitner jerseys are out there anyway? Even Whitner himself acknowledges that his jerseys aren't exactly huge sellers:
"I haven't seen a whole lot around Candlestick, so I wouldn't think there should be [many jerseys in stock], unless somebody's hiding them."
The 49ers tweeted out a picture
of what the jersey will look like. What do you think about it?