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What It’s Like To Play A Game With The Legendary Harlem Globetrotters

DSC00963 BMany people can only dream of the day when they get to see The Legendary Harlem Globetrotters in person. Being blessed with the opportunity to actually play in a basketball game with them was an experience I will never forget. I had such an amazing time! I was SO intimidated when they first told me I’d be playing. I was like, “You mean the world famous Harlem Globetrotters?!! You gotta be kidding me!”

Tanika Gentry

I participated in a once in a life time opportunity that very few people can say they had the chance to experience. To say I was terrified would be an understatement. I had no idea what to expect. I had no idea how to prepare. The only thing that made me feel a little easier was learning I would be playing with them as opposed to against them.DSC01069 BI told myself…girl you gotta prepare! To those who know me well, doing too much is my specialty. I spent the last month off and on getting up at 4am, going to the gym, working on my cardio and shooting hoops in the Aggie Rec Center at Cameron University. I then saw a video of the Harlem Globetrotters making basketball history by breaking nine Guinness World Records for things like: longest basketball shot blindfolded, most basketball three pointers in one minute, and farthest basketball shot under one leg. game 6 B

 

At this point, I knew there was no way I could ever be prepared. So, I decided I would just have fun, and if I ended up becoming a bad basketball meme it was fine because it was for the kids.

 

Tanika GentryTo help encourage me a little more I personally invited the Lawton Christian School Cheerleaders to be my own personal cheer squad. They had an amazing time taking pics, getting autographs and meeting with the Harlem Globetrotters backstage.DSC00972 BDSC00921 B

Some of the Globetrotter team members showed them some of their famous tricks, and even borrowed their pom-poms to cheer and perform their antics while on the court.Tanika GentryThey really enjoyed meeting actor/dancer Noel “Mouse” Areizaga whom they recognized from America’s Best Dance Crew and the movie Bring It On In It To Win It.DSC00969 BThank you Hailey, Alayna, Kayla, Jessica, Queene and Coach Becky. You girls are smart, beautiful and talented, and I was proud to be able to share this experience with you.

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The winner of our pre-game meet and greet, Cynthia Drake, had a wonderful time as well. She said she remembered growing up watching the Globetrotters on Scooby-Doo and loved the idea of sharing this opportunity with her niece, Kendraeya and her nephews, Kentrell & Marcus.DSC00930 B

One of the original Globetrotters is from Cynthia’s hometown, so having the opportunity to get autographs, take pics and dialogue with the current team members was a dream fulfilled.

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The Globetrotters were super supportive the entire game with their show-stopping antics, high-fives and their continuous words of encouragement. They said the best advice they could give me during the game was to just have fun!

 

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One of my shots was blocked by a player who was at least TEN FEET TALL!!! I’m not even kidding when I say that, lol. This dude was a monster! To be completely honest, there was an air-ball, and a missed shot in there as well.

But, I said I would be satisfied if I made at least one basket….and I did!!!!

Goal accomplished, lol! I can officially, and happily retire my Globetrotters jersey.

         

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“The Harlem Globetrotters are a worldwide icon, synonymous with family entertainment and great basketball skills. The Globetrotters represent nine decades of breaking down barriers, acts of goodwill and a commitment to fans that goes beyond the game.”

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The kids from the Salvation Army Boys and Girl Club became my spontaneous in-crowd pep squad, repping “Turn-Up T” to the fullest! You kids are amazing!

 

 

This community came together and showed their love for a legendary act steeped in the tradition of love for all kids and support for communities around the world.

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Thank you to The Harlem Globetrotters for creating memories we will never forget!

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