On Location: Ball Up Streetball “Search for the Next” Tour with The Professor and Eric Gordon

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Streetball gets a bad wrap. After being exposed to the And1 Mixtape Tour, and occasional Rucker Park Tournament highlight, it’s easy to envision four guys standing around while one guy dribbles, each possession punctuated by a slam dunk with little or no defense.

But the Ball Up “Search for the Next” is completely different from its predecessors. It’s a 10-city tour looking for the best undiscovered player in the country that culminates in $100,000 and a roster spot for the tour’s winner.

In 2003, the most popular streetball player in the world right now, The Professor, was one of them.

While attending an And1 Mixtape Tour stop in Portland, Oregon in 2003, the 5’10,” 155-pound 19-year-old Professor competed in an open run competition prior to that evening’s game and did well enough to get invited back that evening to square off against Team And1.

After a solid performance in the game, he joined the team full-time and was suddenly getting paid to play basketball, literally overnight.

“Yeah, true story. We would’ve been fully content just watching the game,” said Professor about the experience. “I got there early and saw that there was an open run going on and that there was a chance. I hopped in as soon as I could and showed them what I could do.

“And next thing I know, I’m selected to play against the And1 Mixtape Tour team. I got the crowd excited again a few times in that game, and then that night, they asked me to go on tour with them, and I was just shocked.”

Ball Up started in 2009 and took the concept of touring streetball to a new level.

“The whole experience has been a blessing. I’ve been able to travel the world, got to call basketball my job thanks to the company giving me my first contract in 2003. So I just feel really blessed to be in this position and that Ball Up wanted to start this movement up again.”

The Professor is humble, but let’s not forget how sick he is.

Here’s that move, in a single frame:

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Read the full article.

  

Suave Men Heritage Edition and Dale Earnhardt Jr. want you to be a man again

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If NASCAR legend Dale Earnhardt Jr. and his JR Motorsports teammate Regan Smith admit to doing it, then there’s no shame in admitting you have, too. So go ahead and unburden yourself – 80% of men have used their girlfriend, wife or spouse’s haircare products.

“We’re all guilty of getting lazy and grabbing whatever the girlfriend or wife is using,” admitted Earnhardt Jr., as he forced a room of roughly 40 men to confront a grim reality about themselves.

“And, you know, that stuff’s not made for men: It’s not made for your hair. Guys out there, stop being lazy. Get the haircare products for our hair and for our needs.”

The numbers are appalling. 70% of men are interested in their own personal style, yet only 20% actually use products made for men.

But Suave Men wants to change that. And they know that education leads to prevention, and ultimately, choices a man can be proud of.

The “Suave Men Heritage and Hair: A Discussion with the Icons of Speed and Style,” took place on the eve of the NASCAR XFINITY race in Brooklyn Park, Michigan.

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For the event, Suave converted a suite at Michigan International Speedway to the “Speed and Style Salon,” a 1930s-era replica barbershop. Hosting the event was famed NASCAR pit reporter Matt Yocum.

But at the steering wheel of this thrill ride into masculinity was Steve Ellsworth, Dale Earnhardt Sr.’s personal barber for over 20 years.

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Mr. Ellsworth gave a total of 15 haircuts, several shampoo jobs and unlimited tips about how to groom like a man. But what everyone wanted was insight into his relationship with the most famous #3 in all of motorsports, Dale Earnhardt Sr.

Read the full article here.

  

Sea Gals Look Hot, Present Seahawks Fan Cruise

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Princess Cruises, the Official Cruise Line of the Seattle Seahawks, kicked off the “Sail with the 12s” with an onboard rally featuring the Sea Gals dance team. Wide Receivers Doug Baldwin and Jermaine Kearse were also in attendance alongside mascots Blitz and Boom.

The Sea Gals were on hand to incite the crowd to join other fans on the Alaskan cruise, that also features several current and former Seahawks joining the cruise for exclusive Q&A sessions, meet-and-greet autograph signings and photo opportunities. Click the link for full details.

  

Burning Nitro With Patron Funny Car Driver Alexis DeJoria

To some people, Alexis DeJoria is the wife of Moster Garage star Jesse James. To others, she is the daughter of Jean-Paul DeJoria, billionaire businessman and co-founder of Paul Mitchell hair products and the Patron Spirits Company. But on the NHRA Mello Yello circuit, Alexis DeJoria is one of the most successful Funny Car drivers on the tour.

We spent two days with Alexis and her team from Kalitta Motorsports at the Kansas Nationals at Heartland Park in Topeka, Kansas, and inadvertently found ourselves in the middle of the most exciting weekend in the history of the sport.

In this video, Alexis talks about how her car accelerates faster than anything on earth (yes, even a fighter jet), how she got into racing, and her career-defining victory in the 2014 NHRA U.S. Nationals, it’s 60th anniversary, a feat akin to winning the Super Bowl.

The day before we arrived in Topeka, during the second day of qualifying, DeJoria ran the best run of her career, an Elapsed Time (ET) of 3.994. ET is the time it takes from the car to get from the starting line to finish line.

Read the full story here.

  

Interview with Duracell’s Kevin Jorgeson, first to free climb El Capitan in Yosemite National Park

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It may not rain, it may not be cold or windy…but it always gets dark. In the outdoors, light is essential. Experts trust Duracell Quantum to provide dependable power in the dark because it lasts longer in 99% of devices.

During Kevin Jorgeson’s free climb of El Capitan, he trusted Duracell Quantum to power him through the night so he could climb in the dark and be one step closer to reaching the top.

We spoke to Kevin about his epic 19-day climb, the wear and tear on his body and his partnership with Duracell.

How are your hands? I’m worried about your hands.

I wish I could say you could still see the battle scars, but unfortunatel,y they are all healed. I was actually quite sad when they healed because it was the last physical remnant and evidence of the climb, you know? Now it is literally all memory.

How did you partner with Duracell? 

I’m pretty selective on all my partnerships and I try to work with companies that I am already using their products. So that includes my climbing shoes, my harnesses, the equipment we use to stay on the wall, and that goes for batteries too. So when we started this conversation, it was a natural fit. I had been using Duracell for years, we even had them up on the wall (of El Capitan). It was something that already existed, and it just meant that now we’d be able to tell that story.

What does “free climbing” mean? Does that mean you walk up to a mountain and climb it, with nothing?

No, the word “free” kind of messes with people’s perception. Really, it’s climbing as you would imagine climbing — it’s just climbing. 99% of climbers are free climbing. Meaning we climb, but we use equipment to catch us if we fall. And we fall a lot. It took us six years to put this thing together. Six years of a lot more failure than success. It wasn’t like we just walked up and climbed this thing. We started working together on this in 2009.

Why did it take so long for someone to be able to free climb El Capitan?

It’s just so hard, man — it’s so hard. The biggest day of the climb, distance wise, was day one, and that was only 500 feet. Every day after that was 200 feet. Our best case scenario for this climb was 12 days. But I got stuck for a week in one spot. So that’s why it took 19 days.

One of the hardest things about climbing the Dawn Wall, and it sounds lame, is the skin on your fingertips. You cut your fingers on the holes that you’re grabbing and you have to put tape on to cover your cuts. The problem is, there is a big difference between calloused skin and tape. We’re climbing as hard as you can climb on vertical granite. Every little bit counts. So when you have two taped fingers, it totally changes your ability to climb. And that’s what happened. I kept going through this cycle where I would rest until one of the two would heal, and then I would climb, then I would re-split the fingers, rest for a couple more days and try again. It was the most mentally taxing climbing experience I’ve ever had. You have to turn the disappointment of failure into motivation, all over again. And that’s a hard way to go back and forth. And all this stuff is happening at night, which made Duracell so clutch.

Read full interview here.

  

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