destinee hooker*It’s a name that causes some people to snicker and some to outright laugh at, but Olympic volleyball star Destinee Hooker could give a you-know-what. She believes it’s a “blessing.”

Hooker — who’s CRUSHING it in London right now (indoor team is undefeated!) — tells TMZ, “When it comes to my name, I honestly find nothing wrong with it. I love my name.”

Still, Destinee admits she’s not deaf to the jokes … “I have been dealing with it since I was a child. People can be childish.”

There was almost no Destinee Hooker at all … the 24-year-old tells us she nearly died at birth, and when she survived, her father was inspired to give her the name “Destinee.”

“Since I was a blessing, [my father] spelled it uniquely. So I am thankful to be here and glad my Dad gave me the name.”

Destinee adds, “No reporters have asked me about my name. You are the first 🙂 thank you for asking by the way.”

Way to go TMZ! You’re always the first. Ain’t ya proud? 🙂