DimeMag

Dime’s Ultimate Movie Baller: Jesus Shuttlesworth vs. Travis Porter

(4) Jesus Shuttlesworth, He Got Game vs. (13) Travis Porter, Passing Glory

THE RULES

“Jesus…JESUS!

Some lady is leaning out the window of a building, cupping her hands and screaming down some 10 stories to the court. You can’t even make out her face from here. But you can definitely hear her. Jesus Shuttlesworth looks up out of habit – a childhood habit – and shrugs. He’s used to it. Every person, newspaper, media member, fan, friend and opponent has used his name in one way or another, sometimes to praise him, sometimes to mock him. It is what it is.

Ever since he went away to Big State University, Jesus can’t even walk down the street anymore. It’s like people find out his name is Jesus and suddenly, he’s automatically a celebrity. It doesn’t matter that he’s just now moving into the starting lineup at State. It doesn’t matter that there’s some guy in the NBA who looks and plays exactly like he does. No one cares about him. It’s all about Jesus.

Even right now, it’s all about Jesus. No one came here to see Travis Porter. The high school kid is doing whatever he can to impress in warm-ups. Normally, people would be fawning over him. Jams off the glass. Step-back jumpers. One-dribble pull-ups. He’s attacking the warm-ups like it’s the actual game. Gotta get the crowd on your side, especially when you’re playing at the Garden in Coney Island. Outsiders get no love here unless they can play.

Still, some of the crowd snickers. Porter’s wearing some shorts that barely cover his whole thigh, with a shirt that has sleeves running down almost to his elbows. The faded yellow and purple colors are shiny and silky. It all looks odd. “Go back to the ’60s man!” someone yells out at Porter. The kid doesn’t even notice the heckling. He’s used to a lot worse.

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