"Oh you karate, dude."
How's that for a sentence that you never thought you'd read in a basketball context? Then again, this whole story is crazy because I never thought I'd see Kenneth Faried and JaVale McGee in the same room as Billy Blanks in the first place, either.
Yet here we are.
During a September portion of training camp, the 58-year-old Tae Bo founder worked out with the Denver Nuggets at the Pepsi Center for a "Celebrity Sweat" episode, per NBA.com (h/t Hardwood Paroxysm's Ananth Pandian). You can see some of the highlights below, which features Denver strength and conditioning coach Steve Hess explaining the workout program as the athletes pump some iron in the background:
So, why the Nuggets?
Blanks presumably could have chosen to work out with any of the 30 teams in the Association, but Pandian speculates that Hess' presence played a large part in the decision: "Hess has been with the Nuggets for 17 years and knows his way around the weight room, which has to be one of the main reasons Billy Blanks chose to work with him."
Apparently it was a good decision.
As Blanks told Nuggets.com's Aaron J. Lopez, “I love the athletes who train and work out hard. That takes a lot of discipline and a lot of focus. I have new respect for them.” And the respect was mutual.
McGee told Lopez that he was impressed by Blanks ability to go through the program, and something tells me that you probably feel the same way after watching that video. 58-year-old men aren't supposed to look like that, after all.
Plus, if the sprints and weight-lifting sessions don't get you, something tells me that all the jumping might.
You can find the whole session here for $11.99, and a portion of the proceeds will be donated to the NBA Cares Initiative. Whether or not you actually want to work up a sweat, it has to be entertaining to see McGee, Faried, Wilson Chandler and Blanks all go to work with Hess yelling at them.