Bikini Basketball: Modest turnout satisfies Chicago Crave’s Kellogg
By Logan Malloy For Sun-Times Media December 16, 2012 9:16PM
Breanna Nunn, right, Tinley Park, waits with others while trying out for the Bikini Basketball Association Chicago Crave team at Lifetime Fitness in Orland Park, IL on Sunday December 16, 2012. | Matt Marton~Sun-Times Media
Updated: January 18, 2013 6:13AM
Some fathers might not want their daughters playing bikini basketball. Fortunately for Orland Park’s Lakesha Proctor, her dad is not among them.
“My father actually suggested it because he heard about it,” Proctor said with a laugh.
“My mom, I didn’t tell her yet. It’ll be a surprise if I make the team.”
The team is the Chicago Crave of the Bikini Basketball Association, which promises a summer 2013 launch in six cities. And Proctor’s chances might be pretty good, considering she was just a couple of years behind Crave player/owner Korie Kellogg at the South Holland school.
The Crave drew 13 women to a tryout Sunday at Orland Park’s Lifetime Fitness. Kellogg, a Mokena resident and the ex-wife of ex-Bulls center Eddy Curry, was happy with the showing.
“A lot of the teams in the other cities had tryouts a lot like this, and some of them had even less (candidates), so I was pleased,” Kellogg said. “I had a tryout where every girl could play. I didn’t have a number in mind. Whatever number came out I would have been happy with.”
The participants engaged in a rigorous two-hour workout. Most said they hoped to gain exposure for their acting or modeling careers. Four women made the trek from outside Illinois, with Florida, Ohio, Arkansas and Mississippi as states represented.
For Proctor, the idea of camaraderie and touring with a team brought her to the tryout.
“Being able to stay in shape and travel,” said Proctor, a professional comedian, about what attracted her to the Crave. “You can feel the unity in here. I miss the team aspect of playing basketball.”
Proctor also noted she felt the Bikini Basketball Association would be in good taste and not exploitive of women.
“This is something I’d love to do, and if (I don’t make the team), I support women doing what they love,” Proctor said. “I think everything in moderation is OK. I’ve seen women wear a lot less on the beach.”
Chanda Harvard, in contrast, had little basketball experience prior to the tryout. The Dolton resident and T.F. South alum hoped the exposure from being selected to the Crave would boost her modeling career.
“If you’re a model like me, you never know who could be watching in the audience,” Harvard said. “This is a networking thing, and kind of like a hobby.”
Harvard said her family was initially skeptical about her attending the Crave tryout due to her limited experience in the sport.
“I played in junior high; I’m not Kobe Bryant. But trying new things is what I’m about,” Harvard said.
Rachel Sally, 22, made the trip from Little Rock, Ark., after hearing about the tryouts on Twitter. Like Harvard, Sally is hoping for some additional exposure to stimulate her modeling career.
“I was modeling in Chicago a few years ago,” Sally said. “Making a trip to Chicago for an organization that I would love to be a part of, that’s well worth the trip.”
Sally, a former high school and AAU basketball player, didn’t think playing the game in beach wear would have a negative connotation.
“I don’t think it will be exploitive,” she said. “I’m doing this for a new life experience to put under my belt. It’s to have fun.”
The Crave did not make any final decisions over its roster, and Kellogg believed she would conduct at least one more tryout before assembling the team.