Hi everyone!! It has been announced that the new spinoff from the Love, Life, & Happiness series, One Shot With A Baller, will be released on Sunday, October 25th!! This is Jayden and Zack’s spinoff in which the two have a lot to deal with when they become captains for the new NBA team, the Baker Trojans.
Here is the cover as well as a preview of the story :
Here is the an excerpt from the story from Jayden’s POV:
Growing up, my life’s dream was to play basketball. Whether it was for the NBA or overseas, I was going to make my mark as one of the greatest players alive. I wanted to be the next Michael Jordan or even LeBron James. But now, I’m making a name for myself and people want to be like me, which I still couldn’t believe. Who knew, Jayden Robertson, would become a high profile star, especially with the way my life was before.
I lay beside my girl, Britney, touching her bare skin and smiled. That’s another thing I still couldn’t believe. After years of denying my feelings for her, we finally got together and we’re still happy. There are still days when I can’t believe she wants to be with me. With the lifestyle I’m living, I’m surprised she hasn’t up and left me, but I’m glad she stuck with me. I probably wouldn’t have made it this far if it wasn’t for her.
She slowly opened her eyes and looked at me. “Hey baby.”
“Hey. I didn’t mean to wake you.”
She smiled. “It’s okay. Is something bothering you?”
I pulled my body down so I could face her. She looked into my eyes while touching my shoulder.
“Just thinking about the team’s first practice. I don’t know why, but I’m scared as hell.”
“Babe, you’ve been in the league for almost two years now. Everything is going to be cool.”
“I would be if it wasn’t a new team. Training camp is always grueling, but when it’s a new team, you have a lot more to prove, especially with teammates and the league. They’re already not taking us seriously because we’re in Baker and named the Trojans.”
“Are you kidding? The Baker Trojans have two of the best players on the team, you and Zack. No one can touch you two.”
“That is so true.”
Britney smiled. “Please don’t let that go to your head.”
“Trust me, it won’t. Now, if Zack ever hears that…”
“I know. He’s so into himself,” Britney teased.
Jayden laughed. “But he’s my boy, though. He always has my back, just like I do with him.”
“You two have always been that way. Just know that I’ll be cheering you on from courtside.”
“Of course, baby. That’s why I love you. You have been there for me since I started.”
“That’s how it’ll stay,” she said and got on top of me. I smiled, knowing where this was heading.
“You know, I probably should be getting some sleep since tomorrow is the first team practice.”
“You should, but not right now.”
She leaned down and I gently grabbed her hair. I still can’t believe she is mine. Although we’ve had our share of ups and downs, we were able to get through them. With all the temptation within the league, I knew if we could overcome those things, then we could survive anything.
Or so I hoped…
After only getting two hours of sleep, I had to rush to Harvey Arena for my first day at training camp. The nerves I had the other night were coming back to me as I opened the double doors to the practice facility. I walked through the practice court and went to the stadium where the Baker Trojans were going to play. I turned around, taking in the space, the seats, and the scoreboard and smiled. Even though I have played in Orlando and in Houston, playing for the inaugural team in Baker felt like home. Baker has been my home while I was attending my Alma Mater, Shaw University, and even after I graduated. Not only that, but my entire family lives here, so of course they were happy when a team was chosen to be in the college town and that myself and Zack were going to be the star players. As an added bonus, our college coach, Marc, was our head coach. Hopefully I won’t get any shit from the other players, because they all know that Marc is also my stepdad. I have something planned for them if they do.
I went to the locker room and saw Zack already in his practice gear. He looked at me and smiled.
“You ready to do this?”
“Of course, man,” I said while giving him dap.
“Can you believe that the two of us are basically headlining an up and coming team? I sure can’t.”
“Me either. I just wanted to play and now, we’re captains.”
“It’s surreal, but I’m up for the challenge. Are you?”
“Hell yeah. We’re going to put this damn team on the map.”
“You know it,” Zack said.
I threw on my jersey when two of our teammates, Jacob Harrington and Adrian Baxter, walked in. I stared at them while Adrian had a smirk on his face. Jacob continued to stare at me while going to his locker.
“You got a problem?” I asked.
“No, just wondering what’s the big hype about you? I mean, I have to wonder how the hell you already became captain when this is the first day of training camp. Oh, I forgot, because your stepdaddy is the coach.”
“My family ties don’t have anything to do with me being captain. I earned it by working my ass off during pre-training. That’s not my problem you didn’t play hard enough.”
“It’ll be your problem when I take that spot from you. Best believe I will.”
“Man, instead of running your damn mouth, get your ass together for practice,” Zack said.
Jacob looked at me again before going to his locker. I stared at mine, becoming agitated with Jacob’s words. Before training camp started, the team went through two weeks of interacting with each other through pre-training. That’s when Marc decided who would be captains of the team. Even though myself and Zack were chosen, many wondered how we were picked since not only were we Marc’s players when we won the division champs at Shaw in 2014, but also because our personal status with him.
“Don’t let that asshole get to you. He wants to push people’s buttons to see how pissed off they will get. Besides, you can mop the floor with those raggedy ass dreads of his and he knows it.”
“If he wants the captain position, then he can have it. I don’t care about that. I just want to play ball, that’s all.”
“Don’t you want to be the best at what you do? You’re not going to do that by just playing ball. You have to take the initiative and be the boss, especially to these dickheads. Marc fairly chose us, so don’t worry about what they have to say. Just prove yourself out on that court because their words don’t matter.”
“Their words do matter since we’re teammates. If we’re a team, we have to work as one.”
Zack shrugged. “You’re right, but if one of our ‘teammates’ come at me wrong, then I’ll have something for them,” he said and threw his shirt in his locker.
“Like you did with old dude after he was checking out Dom?”
“Damn right. I bet he won’t use a beer bottle anymore since it reminds him of me beating his ass with it.”
I shook my head. “Just don’t let that be your way of resolving your issues, Zack. You know what happened to me when I used violence for everything.”
“I get that, but the guy actually grabbed Dom’s ass in front of me. Of course I was going to go off on him.”
“She is a sports reporter now, so she’ll be in the public eye more, especially since she’s with you.”
“As long as no one disrespects her, then I’ll be cool.”
“Look at us. A couple of years ago, you would have been the one telling me not to lose my shit.”
“I know, look how times have changed.”
“Come on co-captain. Let’s see how we’re going to get this team together.”
“No doubt,” Zack replied and we walked out of the locker room. We went out onto the practice court and saw everyone gathered around Marc, who gave us an impatient stare.
“You two know practice already started, don’t you?”
“We were only a minute late,” I said.
“I don’t care if it’s a minute or ten, you’re still late. You two are captains so you need to set an example for the rest of the team.”
“I guess you won’t be getting special treatment now, will you?” Jacob asked while smiling.
I wanted to rip that smile off his damn face. Asshole.
“If this happens again you two will be doing sprints for the entire practice. But now, we have other things to discuss. As you know, this is the first day of training camp, so there will be a lot of things happening, from seeing who is the strongest and who will be picked as my starters. Of course, the captains will be in their respective positions, but we have to pick our core three. With that, we will be doing several drills to get everyone prepared, not only for that position but for our first game with Toronto. Since we’re a new team, we have to prove ourselves ten times as hard as anyone else, so we need the best to do that.”
“No doubt, Coach,” Jacob agreed.
I rolled my eyes. I already knew this jerk was going to be a kiss ass.
“Now that that’s out of the way, we have a special announcement to make. Many of you have not heard the news yet, but we have officially signed a new player to our team. He is a powerhouse on the boards and we will definitely need that for some of the big teams we’ll be facing in the season. Many of you may have known him during your college years. He had a brief stint overseas before coming back and he wanted to play for this team. So let’s all welcome Paul Franklin to the team.”
Everyone was surprised to see Paul walking up to us, giving that conceited ass smile that he always gives. I think I was the most surprised as he looked at me and laughed.
“Well, well, well, if it isn’t Jayden Robertson. I never expected to be your damn teammate.”
I looked at him, ready to beat his ass when Zack pulled me back. The last time I saw him was during the division championship, which I beat him at his own game, but a couple of nights before, I was choking his ass after he tried to talk to Britney. Teammate or not, I’ll do it again since I can’t stand his ass.
“Whoa, don’t even do it, Jay.”
“Now, I know there’re some issues with some of you, but let’s get one thing straight, whatever happened in the past needs to stay there. We’re part of a team, which means you all need to work together. If not, myself, the GM, and the owner will find players who will work together. You hear me?” Marc said while staring at me.
I sighed. “Loud and clear, Coach.”
“Alright, let’s get this practice started. Warm-ups, now!”
I glanced at Paul who started laughing before going to the other guys to get ready for suicides. Zack looked at me, giving me an “I got your back” look while going to the line. I knew he did and would probably prevent me from knocking the shit out of Paul if he comes at me wrong; but if he tries to talk to Britney again; even Zack won’t be able to keep me from killing him.