THROWBACK THURSDAY—JOHN HUMPHREY “HELICOPTER” v1

The Helicopter first took flight in the sixth grade. He was dunking uphill on an 11-foot hoop before he hit high school. Oh, and he’s built like an NFL linebacker. An athlete like that can get by on hops and muscle and still have himself a career, but John Humphrey was never like most athletes.

As a high school senior, the Morehead City, North Carolina, native transferred to storied high school power Oak Hill Academy, where he played alongside 10-year NBA vet Steve Blake. He then went on to become a national Junior College Third Team All-American, and a starter on a Div. I Middle Tennessee State team that finished second in the Sun Belt Conference. Since college, he’s dominated everywhere imaginable, from the ABA to the Japanese league to, of course, the Tour.

And wherever, he brought two things with him: his out-of-this-world leaping ability—seriously, do you realize this man is 6’1”?!—and his unexpected-for-a-streetballer fundamental skills that remind you he’s not just bigger, faster and stronger…he’s straight up better than you, too.

“If you watch the Mix Tapes, I play the fundamentals,” he says. “I do the same things I do in a real game.”

Unfortunately for his opponents, this is what he does in a real game.