Friday, August 06, 2010

BBall With a Pro Athlete

"Barry! You want some Chicken!?"

Last weekend, we had a "Basketball Jones" 3 on 3 tourney with a few friends and friends of friends.  It was a lot of fun, I'm starting to really enjoy playing basketball now.  (I've told Alex that I had retired from the sport, maybe twice now haha)  But that's because since swimming, my endurance has become much better, and I'm less worried about collapsing on the floor after my 1st game.

So we're running games the whole day, getting a good sweat on, having fun.  When I hear CLANK.  I look over and I see this huge black dude dunking on foos.  I swear the average height of everyone was probably around 5'10".  And this guy is standing 6'5", looking like a athletic beast in the midst of it all.  I'm hearing guys around me, "damn who is this kid" "you see him? dudes a beast!" "he's built like a football player!".

Apparently he's Ryan Bailey, a professional runner for Nike.  And he's training to be a potential runner for the US Team.  It's pretty cool to have shared the same court as a future Olympian.  I'm not saying he's definitely going to be in the Olympics, but he has a good chance of making it.  And I'll be keeping my eye out.

He's got a hell of a story too.  I'm a horrible story teller, so here's a snippet from NY Times

Skipping class one afternoon, Bailey and a friend looked at a board listing the school track records. Neither realized those were also state marks. “I can get those,” Bailey said. He did not know Parks was behind him. Parks told Bailey, “Why don’t you come out and prove it?”
His mind squarely set on football, Bailey brushed off Parks.
“I thought track was for a bunch of nerds,” he said Thursday, laughing.
Bailey never went to see Parks at the track, but he showed up there one day to make up a physical education class. Wearing baggy jeans and basketball shoes, Bailey passed Parks, who had his stopwatch ready, as he peeled off a lap. Parks recalls clocking Bailey at around 51 seconds for 400 meters. Parks saw a future superstar.
 The article then goes on to talk about unfortunate injuries he's had every year in high school like breaking his foot twice, getting stabbed 3 times on a bus?  Man imagine how much faster he could be if he didn't have those setbacks.

Anyways, I'm glad the guy found a path for his talent, and I wish him much success.

1 comment:

Cora L. said...

DId you get me his autograph!