Reporting Natalie Nyhus
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Harlem Globetrotters’ most explosive new player — Fatima “TNT” Maddox — is one of 10 rookies this season.
She is leaving her mark on courts across the country, and in the history books.
“After nearly 20 years of them not finding a woman, that they thought I fit the bill, and for me to have that honor to rep women every time I step on the court, it means so much to me,” said TNT.
TNT was one of four women and 15 men invited to try out for this year’s team.
“They treat me like one of the guys,” TNT revealed. “They don’t take it easy on me, and I don’t take it easy on them.”
After showing her skills in drills, dunks and tricks she was chosen to wear a Globetrotters jersey. Head coach of the world champion Minnesota Lynx said she thinks it’s exciting.
“I think it’s a sign of the times. I think women have really evolved and we’ve seen an evolution of the game in the last 10 years. It’s great to see TNT out there,” said Cheryl Reeve.
TNT is the ninth woman to suit up with the ‘Trotters in the organization’s 86-year history. And she’s taking the challenge head on.
“I’m in the hotel rooms, breaking lamps and knocking pictures off the wall, trying to get my game tight to keep up with these guys,” laughed TNT.
According to her, there are perks to being the only girl, such as getting her own locker room. And she hangs on to some femininity with her perfect manicure.
“Everyone’s like, ‘How do you play with those nails?’ Very carefully, first and foremost,” she said.
Now with seven months under her belt, TNT has settled into her role.
“I tell people I walked in the door with two brothers, and now I have about 30, because they truly make me feel like I’m part of a family.”