Had Brooklyn Nets forward Kris Humphries not taken a liking to basketball at a young age, we might be sitting here talking about how he is the most decorated Olympian ever. Okay, so maybe it’s not that simple, but Humphries was a tremendous swimmer in his youth. According to NetsDaily.com, Humphries was the top swimmer in his age bracket when he was 10 years old. Some guy named Michael Phelps was right behind him.
At age 10, Michael Phelps was ranked #2 among swimmers of his age class. The #1 swimmer was Kris Humphries— NetsDaily.com (@NetsDaily) Aug. 1, 2012
Although it might sound far-fetched, Black Sports Online pointed out that Humphries talked about his days in the pool during an interview with People.com (via ESPNNewYork.com) a couple of years ago. As it turns out, he was in fact better than the 15-time gold medalist.
“I was so good at a young age (he outraced Phelps when he was 10 years old) that I got a little burnt out,” he explained. “I also grew up in the Michael Jordan era … for me, I watched (basketball) and saw it as a challenge. It’s hard to stay focused on something when you have a ton of success at such a young age, so I picked up basketball a little later and rolled with that.”
Phelps has also talked about how much of an influence M.J. had over him at a young age, but, obviously, he was passionate enough about swimming to stick with it. Since they were only 10 years old and this was far before the days when Humphries was asking ex-girlfriends for paternity tests and making fun of himself in Internet videos, there’s no telling how it would have turned out. To be able to say that Humphries was once better at swimming than Phelps is just plain entertaining.
Photo credits: Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images and MARTIN BUREAU/AFP/GettyImages