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KennySailors


KENNY SAILORS

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KennySailors


KENNY SAILORS

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The Story


THE STORY

 

“People don’t realize the total capacity of what this guy has done.  But, most of all…it’s basketball and what he’s done, a two time all-American, the college records, the home record they had, the road record they had…. All of this stuff in itself is enough, but then he’s the guy that pioneered the modern jump shot.  Holy cow!  This changed basketball…it turned basketball on its head” Jim Brandenburg

 

The Story


THE STORY

 

“People don’t realize the total capacity of what this guy has done.  But, most of all…it’s basketball and what he’s done, a two time all-American, the college records, the home record they had, the road record they had…. All of this stuff in itself is enough, but then he’s the guy that pioneered the modern jump shot.  Holy cow!  This changed basketball…it turned basketball on its head” Jim Brandenburg

 

“Jumpshot” uncovers the inspiring true story of Kenny Sailors, the proclaimed developer of the modern day jump shot in basketball, and how the zenith of our lives doesn’t end in our athletic prime. Introducing this never before seen “leaping one-hander” to the masses on a national level Kenny quickly grew to be a fan favorite while leading his Wyoming Cowboys to the Collegiate National Championship in Madison Square Garden in the 1943. But after playing on several losing teams in an unstable, emerging league now known as the NBA, Kenny disappeared into the Alaskan wilderness only to be forgotten by the sport he helped pioneer. Now, nearly sixty years later, the multitude of people he has touched along the way have forced Kenny’s humble reemergence. This film will follow Kenny’s supporters’ ongoing efforts to not only get him in recognized in the Naismith Hall of Fame, but also, to uncover the man behind the shot and why the sport he helped define never defined him.

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About Kenny


ABOUT KENNY

 

“If I ever ran into him, I would just thank him for the gift that he gave basketball. Because, you know, it's something that I was able to use to play at the highest level, and earn a living doing something that I loved to do, and hestarted that legacy and created something that allowed me to be successful.” Mark Price Ex-NBA All Star and 3 Point Champion

 

About Kenny


ABOUT KENNY

 

“If I ever ran into him, I would just thank him for the gift that he gave basketball. Because, you know, it's something that I was able to use to play at the highest level, and earn a living doing something that I loved to do, and hestarted that legacy and created something that allowed me to be successful.” Mark Price Ex-NBA All Star and 3 Point Champion

 

Kenny Sailors grew up on a farm south of Hillsdale, Wyoming, where he developed his effective jump shot while playing against his 6-foot-4-inch older brother Bud. He eventually brought his skills to the University of Wyoming, and in 1943 he led the Cowboys to the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship defeating Georgetown 46-34. Two days after winning the NCAA Championship, Wyoming played NIT Champion St. John’s in a Red Cross benefit game for the war effort in Madison Square Garden. Wyoming beat St. John’s in overtime by a score of 52–47, becoming the undisputed national champions on the court. Kenny was named the NCAA Basketball Tournament Most Outstanding Player for his efforts. He was the unanimous selection as College Basketball Player of the Year in 1943. Kenny is the only player in the history of Wyoming Cowboys basketball to be selected as an All-American two times, in 1943, and 1946.

From 1946 to 1951, Kenny played professionally in the BAA and NBA as a member of the Cleveland Rebels, Chicago Stags, Philadelphia Warriors, Providence Steamrollers, Denver Nuggets, Boston Celtics, and Baltimore Bullets. He scored 3,480 points in his professional career. Kenny had a distinguished professional career. He was popular with fans and journalists, but his achievements and skills went largely unnoticed in later years because he had played for only five seasons and then chose to retire in far off Wyoming and, eventually, in even more remote Alaska, where he pursued his passion of big game hunting as a guide and outfitter. Little did Kenny know that his basketball stardom would follow him to the furthest reaches of civilization. Not long after settling into his homestead, Kenny was asked to coach Glenallen’s first high school women’s basketball team. Having never coached before, Kenny accepted the offer as an opportunity for his daughter to continue to play organized sports and to invest in young people. His freshmen would go undefeated the next four seasons, winning 60+ consecutive games until they reached the State Championship their senior year.

Sailors was inducted into the University of Wyoming Athletics Hall of Fame on October 29, 1993 and returned to Wyoming after the passing of his beloved wife in 1998. In 2012, Sailors was named to the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame, yet still has not been recognized by the Naismith Hall of Fame for his contribution to the game of basketball.