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Ex-Vol Pro Wrestler Challenges Entire City of Memphis to "Make a Free Throw"


Okay, we here in Flyerville are rarely disposed to reproduce PR-gimmick press releases, but this one, from wrestling organization Total Nonstop Action Entertainment, got us. We reprint it for your entertainment. Enjoy:

Former Tennessee Vols center and current Total Nonstop Action (TNA) Wrestling superstar Kevin Nash challenges the entire city of Memphis to a free-throw contest at TNA's "Slammiversary" pay-per-view event June 8 at the DeSoto County Civic Center.

A routine guest appearance by TNA Wrestling superstar Kevin Nash on WXMX 98.1-FM's "Chris Jarman Midday Show" Wednesday ended with a basketball challenge to the entire city of Memphis.

Nash, a former Vols center who went on to become a feature film star and multi-time world champion of professional wrestling, engaged in some friendly banter with Jarman, a diehard University of Memphis fan. Tennessee defeated Memphis 66-62 at the FedEx Forum on February 23.

After Jarman claimed that officiating allowed "Tennessee to walk up and down Beale Street all night long," Nash claimed that he could not only "outshoot anyone playing for Memphis, but anyone in the city," as well. Free throws plagued Memphis both in its sole loss of the regular season against the Volunteers and the Tigers’ 75-68 loss to Kansas in the NCAA Championship.

"I'm coming down to Memphis, and frankly I've got some time to kill. So how about you guys find me someone from Memphis, and we'll shoot it out before 'Slammiversary' at the DeSoto County Civic Center," Nash said. Jarman said on-air he would contact numerous former Tigers and fans across the city to find someone who could answer Nash's challenge. In addition, Jarman added a stipulation that the loser would make a "big donation" to "Project Package," a Southaven, Mississippi-based charity that collects donations to create care packages for military servicemen and women from the Mid-South region.

Nash played center at Tennessee for three seasons during 1978-80, averaging 5.1 points and 4.2 rebounds in 85 games. Heavily recruited out of high school in Michigan, Nash finished second to Magic Johnson for Michigan’s "Mr. Basketball" title. Under head coach Don DeVoe, the Volunteers reached the NCAA Tournament in the 1979 and 1980 seasons, both seasons in which Nash played as a starter. Following a controversial meeting with DeVoe after the 1980 season, Nash left Tennessee after a rumored physical confrontation with DeVoe.

Despite being listed as a career 45.7 percent free throw shooter for the Vols, Nash said he was confident he could out-shoot anyone associated with the Memphis program. For more information, check out the TNA website.

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