Harlem Globetrotter And Tallest Pro Basketball Player In The World: 'Tiny' Sturgess Takes Culture Pop Quiz
The Harlem Globetrotters, America's premiere entertainment basketball team, have never shied away from spectacles. From their specific blend of comedy and athletic bravado to the 1974 kids' morning show, "The Harlem Globetrotters Popcorn Machine," this team has been playing and performing for 86 consecutive years.
Currently, the Globetrotters lineup boasts the Guinness record holder for "World's Tallest Professional Basketball Player" -- a 7-foot-8-inch British gentleman by the name of Paul "Tiny" Sturgess, who is five months into his very first tour.
An avid golfer in high school, Sturgess suddenly grew 12 inches over the course of a year, and the basketball coach suggested he might give a different sport a try.
By the end of high school, he was 7 feet 2 inches tall, and he grew 6 more inches in the ensuing year.
After moving to the U.S and attending college at Mountain State University in West Virginia, Sturgess quickly became a fan favorite, leading the team to two regional championships. Now in his first season as a Globetrotter, he's joined on the court by the shortest player in Globetrotter history -- Jonte "Too Tall" Hall, who stands at 5 feet 2 inches.
Speaking with The Huffington Post by phone after practice on Thursday, Sturgess shared with us some of his unique cultural habits, by way of our Huffpost Culture Pop Quiz.
What was the first album you ever bought?
Hm. Probably an R&B collection album or something like that. That was the first thing I was into.
Like a collection of singles?
Yeah, like the hits.
What was the last song you downloaded?
An English rap song. I listen to a lot of English rap. I am English. It was probably something by Giggs.
If you could only take one DVD with you on a deserted island, what would it be?
"Love Actually." That's kind of cheesy, but it always reminds me of home.
What was the first movie you remember seeing?
A Disney movie. "The Lion King," I think.
What was the last movie you recommended to friends?
"Immortal." I remember watching that -- told a couple friends to go see that in the theaters.
Are you a reality TV junkie?
Not gonna lie, I'm a sucker for it. I was hooked to watching "Survivor."
Do you have a guilty pleasure song on your iPod?
Well...I do have a couple of Justin Bieber songs, I don't really like to admit to that one. Oh, I'm kind of ashamed to say that.
What was the last play you saw?
I actually went to "The Phantom of the Opera" in London five or six years ago, and I really enjoyed that.
You a big video game person?
When I'm on tour, I'm all over that. "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3." I play online, and I'm not gonna lie, I'm pretty good.
What's your favorite TV show from the past few years?
Oh, I just watched a lot of... wait. I can't remember the name right now. The one with the Doug Heffernan character?
Not quite sure...
Hm, I'll think of that title. I also watch a lot of "The Simpsons." Back home, the "Big Brother" series, whenever that's on I'll watch it. Oh, it was "The King of Queens." That's the Doug Heffernan thing.
Do you have a warm-up song before a game?
Yeah, I always listen to music when I'm warming up. Lots of techno. Don't know why, but it gets me ready.
What was the first R-rated movie you saw?
Definitely a horror movie, but can't remember exactly what it was. I've always been fascinated with horror movies. Right now, I love the "Saw" movies.
Do you plan on staying with the Globetrotters a long time?
I hope so.
How long do people usually play for the team?
It varies -- couple guys been here over 10 years. They can stay as long as they want as long as they're playing well and it's working out. But I'm really enjoying what i'm doing right now.
Watch a video ESPN made during Sturgess' college basketball days: