Making Khiladi look like a kidAkshay Kumar, one of India’s biggest action movie stars, is well known for his love of martial arts, emphasis on functional workouts as against gymming and doing his own stunts in all his films. To prepare for his upcoming sports drama flick, ‘Akki’ come on record to say that he will look upto basketballer Satnam Singh Bhamara for inspiration. Followers of Indian basketball already know about Satnam Singh Bhamara, the 18-year-old, 7ft 2 inch phenom from Punjab who is currently training at the IMG Academy in Florida, USA on a full sports scholarship. The Khiladi had met Bhamara during his recent visit to Bradenton, Florida, where his niece is training to become a basketball player. The Bollywood star was hugely impressed by the Punjabi baller and shared a post on his Facebook page hailing Bhamara as “India’s most influential basketball player”: Satnam is not only incredibly tall but unbelievably dedicated & talented at what he does here at the IMG Basketball school. What he's been through to get where he is, is an inspiration in itself. He reminded me of me, when nothing but ur dreams matter. I wish this lovely young man a super successful life & I urge many of you to follow him & learn from his story. I've been in America for nearly a month now, but when I leave, I'll be taking his hardship & training myself like a true champ for my next film, he's really given me the spirit to fight on...Not surprisingly, in a country where movies and cricket are national pastimes, this single post by Akshay Kumar drew nearly 2.5 lakh likes, 4000+ comments and 5000+ shares (almost equalling the FB likes of our entire Basketball India page!). Talk about celebrity power.Seeing Kumar’s interest in hoops got basketball keedas like us thinking: what are the top 10 moments when Bollywood celebrities enacted/spoke/praised or tweeted anything to do with basketball? Here’s our list of top 10 ‘Bollywood meets Basketball’ moments (plus three notable mentions). Feel free to agree/disagree or add your own to this list.*Note: The following list is restricted to Bollywood only and does not cover regional language basketball films in Tamil and Marathi.
#1 Kuch Kuch Hota Hai
This Hindi blockbuster starring King of Romance Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol and Rani Mukherjee is single handedly responsible for ruining the image of basketball in India. Sure, you may win some brownie points by letting your girlfriend beat you in hoops, but the number of travelling violations is just outrageous. To make matters worse, with over one million visits,this is the most viewed basketball video in India. Wheres my gun, I want to shoot myself in the head.