Stop and Stare, literally. NBA baller Serge Ibaka is leaving very little to the imagination, as he poses nude for ESPN The Magazine Body Issue. The Oklahoma City Thunder player, who also happens to be Keri Hilson’s boyfriend, is featured in the the “Bodies We Want” section. Check out a few excerpts from his interview.
I remember my first moment playing basketball. It was in the Congo. I think I was like 7 or 8. My mom and dad played basketball too, so my dad was always asking me to come to see him play. So one day one of the guys who was playing with my dad, he said, “Hey, let me teach you something.” So he took an empty bottle of water and was using it as a ball and he said, “OK, take one step and do two and then jump — that’s all it is.” I went back home, and all night I was doing it. All night. That’s all I could think about. Even in the bathroom, I’m brushing my teeth and I start doing this. That’s where everything started.
I wish I had more body parts that I could work out. If I had my way, I’d be in the gym all day. I love to lift. When I don’t have basketball practice, I’ll be in a gym for 2.5 hours – 30 minutes abs, 2 hours lifting.
If you put some work in, you can have this body. It’s not because all basketball players have this body, no. I have this kind of body because I put a lot of work into it. I work out a lot.
I had a poster of Kevin Garnett hanging in my room. He was one of my inspirations when I was young. I was at my friend’s house — he had a lot of money, so sometimes I’d go to his place to watch some NBA action. I remember the first time I saw Kevin Garnett, I just felt something in my body: “This feels like me.” I loved his spirit and his passion. I just felt like it was me out there playing on the court.
My goal is the same every offseason. I work my body to be good. Working in the gym all summer makes me feel stronger in my game. Last summer I was in Vegas. I was waking up at 5 or 6 a.m., and I’d go out and run up a mountain in Vegas. I’d run the mountain, then come back, eat breakfast, go to the gym and play basketball and work on my game. Then I’d go box in the gym and do some lifting. It was like that for two months every day.
The magazine was released Monday on the internet and will hit the newsstands Friday. Ibaka was featured in the special issue along with 21 other athletes. [ESPN]