Sports Science, the show that turns athletes into test subjects and measures how fast they move, how high they jump or how hard they hit, has been on the air since 2007. Now a weekly part of ESPN’s SportsCenter, the show, hosted by John Brenkus, has taken to comparing athletic movement to its corresponding real-life equivalents. For instance, being hit by Patrick Willis at full speed might be like having a piano fall on you from the 13th floor of an apartment building.
At the LeBron XII unveiling last week at Nike’s headquarters in Beaverton, Oregon, Brenkus doled out some fairly mind blowing facts about LeBron James and how he plays the game of basketball. Here are some highlights.
He Takes Huge Strides
All Photos: AP Images
The average NBA player can move from one end of the basketball court to the other in roughly 13 strides (except Earl Boykins, who needs 100.) It takes the athletically freakish James only nine. Nine steps and he’s at the hoop, which is why attempting to stop James on the fast break is akin to trying to beat Chris Brown in a dance contest.
Watch LeBron James’s Insane Conditioning Drill.
His Arms Are Like Helicopter Blades
LeBron is known for his tomahawk dunks. At times it appears he’s dunking with such force that the arena may come down around him. According to Brenkus, during a dunk James swings his arm at about 1,124 degrees per second, which is as fast as a moving blade on a Chinook helicopter. When James accidentally slashes the rim in half this season, don’t say we didn’t warn you.
He’s A Forceful Dude
James generates a ton of force when he jumps to dunk, to catch a pass or to send your lay-up attempt into outer space. He delivers so much force, that if someone standing 5-foot-9 and 165 pounds created the exact same amount of force, his vertical jump would measure out at 57 inches. Which is obscene.
He Could Power a Small City
When James jumps, he can create a peak power output of close to 9,300 watts, according to Brenkus. That means the King creates enough power to light up four lighthouses, or power a small, post-apocalyptic city for a few days.
He Could Pet An Elephant If He Wanted
When James stands and reaches as high as he can, he stretches to 8-feet-10 1/4 inches. What does this mean, you ask? Well, if he were in Asia and had a burning desire to pet a male Asian elephant on top of the head, he could do it while standing flat-footed. Because when you have a chance to pat the head of an elephant, you do it.
He’s Bigger Than Almost Everyone
LeBron James is 6-foot-8 and 250 pounds, an inch taller and 25 pounds heavier than the average NBA small forward. No wonder nobody can stop him; he’s kind of cheating.
He’ll Send Your Weak Lay-Up Attempt to the Moon
Chase-down blocks have long been one of James’s signature moves, along with dunking, scoring and crushing opponents’ hopes and dreams. When he’s in full chase-down mode, James can impact almost 30 G’s of acceleration on the ball. He once swatted a ball 25 feet off the glass.