It only took two minutes to set a new world record in free throws. Two minutes and 72 out of 72 free throws. Well, actually it took a little bit longer and a few more shots. More than 30 years and over two million free throws in over 300 gyms.
When I first started playing basketball I read in the Guinness Book of World Records that Ted St. Martin had the world record of 200 free throws in a row. It took years of practice before I finally reached that number, but by then Ted (now a friend of mine) had raised the record to 2,036. Geez, thats almost impossible I thought. Almost.
Thousands of shots later and shooting at over 200 YMCAs as I traveled for a small delivery company which happened to be called "Hotshot", I finally made 2,118 in a row. But Tom Amberry had broken Ted's record with 2,750 in a row, and then Ted later established the current record of 5,221!
So my main goal now on my free throw journey is to reach that number. In the last few years, I had discovered some speed records also.
Another good friend that I met in a national contest is Ed Palubinskas. Ed is from Australia, is the all-time leading scorer in the Olympics, played at LSU, coached Shaq on shooting in 2001, and not only has shooting down to a science, he can SHOOT! He set the one hour record for free throws a couple of times, with a best of 1206 out of 1265, which has since been beaten by Fred Newman with 1663 made free throws.
I found out about the two minute record when I was at the Phoenix All-Star Jam Session. Ed set the record for two mintue blindfolded free throws with 8 shots, something that would probably take me two HOURs to do. I have to be focused on the back of the rim when I shoot, which is hard to see with your eyes closed.
When I got back to Alabama I set up my Shootaway rebounder, got a couple of friends to help and started shooting. The first attempt I made 66 out of 67, which was better than the Guinness record of 60 made shots out of 72 attempts. If I had missed a couple of more shots I might have quit for the day, but it was so close to perfection that I thought I might could make every shot if I stayed focused.
So I did. Two minutes and 72 shots later it was over. Well, not quite over. Hopefully I've still got a couple million more free throws in me. I have only been to 243 YMCAs where I have made 100 consecutive or more free throws and there are over 2,600 YMCAs. Geez, not even 10 percent yet. And there is that almost impossible number of 5,221.
The video is on youtube and at focusfreethrows.spaces.live.com
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