Well, like millions of other people I’m searching for a tissue after watching Budwesier’s tribute to retiring NBA All-Star Dwyane Wade. Awesome stuff… and while most everyone can admire his greatness from afar, I’m honored to say I got to see it up-close and personal for a day.
That’s because Dwyane has been a T60 customer.
Here’s the story. I knew someone who worked for his agent back in 2007, so when the subject of shooting video at his annual basketball camp came up… my friend threw T60 into the conversation.
We got the job in large part because he wasn’t the first NBA All-Star we worked for. We had already produced a couple of videos for Chris Bosh (another class-act), but this shoot was a little different.
I’ve been fortunate over the course of my life to meet and be around some gigantic sports legends.
Muhammad Ali once turned to me during a photo shoot and jokingly sparred with me.
Yeah… you don’t get any bigger than that.
So… I’m not easily star-struck by athletes, and that was true when it came to D-Wade as well. However, I was pretty psyched about producing the video, and I walked away in awe of how he handled himself and a fan for life.
I had been to many athletic camps like his over the years and here’s what typically happens. Tons of kids attend, the star athlete shows-up toward the end, gives a little speech and hits the road. Maybe he or she takes a few photos with the kids.
Which is why you can imagine my surprise when I arrived before the event began, and Dwyane was already there. We chatted off-camera for a bit, and I put a wireless microphone on him. I told him, don’t worry about me, just do what you would normally do at the camp.
Remember, I was just expecting a little speech at the end.
I started shooting video of the kids going through drills… shooting, defense, you name it. All of a sudden, I hear Dwyane through my headphones because he had on the wireless mic, and it sounded like he was talking to some kids.
I start looking around the gym, and not only was he chatting with the kids… he was doing drills with them!
He was shooting, guarding them, hanging out with them, talking with them… he just looked like he was part of the group. The best part? It wasn’t an act for the camera. He was just having fun.
During a break, I told him he surprised me by jumping in with the kids. He kind of shrugged and said, “Just doing what I do, like you said.”
The rest of the day was more of the same. The kids LOVED him, and it was easy to see why. He was totally genuine and it showed.
I walked away from the shoot a huge fan.
After having seen the video we produced for him, I’ve had more than one person ask, “Is he really that good of a guy?”
If you’ve seen the new Budwesier video, you now know the answer to that one.
Yes, he is.
Dwyane Wade is special beyond the basketball court, and I can’t wait to see what he does next.