The first half of Wednesday night’s game between the Wizards and the Sixers was a snoozefest—but what happened next was thrilling. Two local youth-league teams of 9- and 10-year-old ballers were let loose on the court to play each other in a mini game, witnessed by the NBA-arena crowd. Honestly, the whole thing was more entertaining than the actual game we paid to see, and it culminated in a spectacular shot from Rasheed “R.J.” Muhammad, a 4th grader from Baltimore, who pulled up from well before the NBA three-point line at the buzzer to end the game.
At the buzzer… BANK'S OPEN! pic.twitter.com/mGfaS3HmcC
— NBA (@NBA) January 10, 2019
The crowd went absolutely wild. A standing ovation, screams, and bowing down commenced as the crowd (of mostly Sixers fans) tried to process what just happened.
When we called him up the next day, the 9-year-old Muhammad told us he took a look at the time left on the clock and knew he had to shoot. “I just felt confident,” he said. “It felt really exciting. I just stood there after the shot and let them rally around me.”
It wasn’t long before NBA.com took notice, and the video of his game-ender wound up on highlight reel after highlight reel. Rasheed Muhammad Sr. turned on ESPN’s SportsCenter to see his son at #10. His hope is that this moment might draw attention to his son’s team, Team Takeover, which is still looking for a sponsor to help them with the hotel and travel costs that come with supporting their sons’ games.
The younger Muhammad says his favorite subject at Baltimore Montessori Public Charter School is math. He’s played basketball since he could walk, and has dreams of playing in college and professionally. Seems like he’s got a shot.