Imagine being 18 years old and going to a foreign land, where you don’t know any of the language, to pursue your goals of becoming a professional basketball player. Well Brandon Jennings doesn’t have to imagine as he lived through that exact scenario. After graduating High School, Jennings became the first American player to circumvent the NBA’s one-year-out-of-high-school rule and jump directly to professional basketball in Europe. Figuring that while most players had to worry about schooling and basketball all he would have to focus on was improving his game in a professional setting.
Thinking outside the box was obviously something Jennings had no problem with, so signing with Under Armour to be their first basketball sponsored athlete wasn’t as dramatic an event like it would have with any other player. Wearing Under Armour in the European league, Jennings not only learned what it took to be a professional but also helped Under Armour fine tune their basketball shoes before releasing them into the market. After his season overseas Jennings made himself eligible for the 2009 NBA Draft where he was chosen at the #10 spot by the Milwaukee Bucks.
Showing off what he learned in Europe, Jennings was one of the stand-out rookie guards in the 2009-2010 season. One of his breakthrough performances was on November 14th, 2009 where he had a 55-point game against the Golden State Warriors and fellow rookie Stephen Curry. The 55 points broke the team record for most points by a rookie, previously set by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, as well as he became the youngest player to ever score that amount in the NBA. Sporting Under Armour sneakers in every game, Jennings helped lead the Bucks to the NBA Playoff where they hadn’t been since 2006. He also placed third in the Rookie of the Year voting behind the Sacramento Kings’ Tyreke Evans and Steph Curry.
The start of the 2009-2010 NBA season was the unveiling of Brandon Jennings’ first signature shoe, the Under Armour Micro G Black Ice, coinciding with Under Armour’s official leap into selling basketball sneakers. The shoes sold exceptionally well and we can’t wait to see what Jennings second signature shoe will be. Not to shabby for the new 22 year old Compton-born star. Happy Birthday to Mr. Jennings, you can give him a shout out on Twitter at @H00dFavorite,we can’t wait to see what the future holds for him.