By now, I hope you’ve seen the viral video of Titus, the trick shot basketball star — age 2. It’s already garnered nearly 8 million views on YouTube and gained national media attention, including an exclusive interview on TheBlaze radio:
But late-night comedian Jimmy Kimmel wasn’t impressed by little Titus’ show of skills during an appearance on NBC’s Today Show. “He stinks. Boooo,” Kimmel said after watching the toddler miss baskets during the morning show’s live broadcast. “He finally made one in the fourth hour of “Kathie Lee and Hoda.”
“That kind of talk is something this tenacious two-year-old won’t take lying down,” Titus’ dad, Joseph Ashby said in a response video posted to YouTube Tuesday. As his son sank basket after basket in the background, Ashby encouraged Kimmel to go one-on-one with his tiny little baller:
By Wednesday, the video response had gotten Kimmel’s attention and he responded to Ashby with a definitive yes.
— Jimmy Kimmel (@jimmykimmel) February 13, 2013
“We did the response because we thought it was funny,” Joseph Ashby told ESPN’s Playbook Wednesday. “Every time I explained the concept to someone over the past day, they laughed out loud. I can’t resist a good joke.”
The rules of the Titus Challenge are simple — young Titus hits a shot from three-times his height, about 10 feet, while Kimmel would have to hit a similar shot from three times his height, or “25 feet.” That might be a slight exaggeration in Kimmel’s size since he the host stands a bit shorter than 8-foot-4.
“Then we’ll see who needs editing to look good,” Joseph Asbhy adds. At the end of the clip, young Titus puts some spice of his own by saying (with some considerable help from his dad) “Jimmy, you’re going down.”
“Our first thought was to explain why Titus missed the shots he did on the “Today” Show. We’re so close to the situation that we had to remind ourselves that it’s a joke and we shouldn’t care,” Ashby said. “After we were able to laugh at it, we thought, ‘Why not fire back?’”
Stay tuned for the epic showdown…