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GOP Sen. Ted Cruz defeats liberal late night host Jimmy Kimmel in charity basketball game

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and late night host Jimmy Kimmel squared off in a one-on-one charity basketball challenge that saw Cruz defeat the host 11-9. (Image source: YouTube screenshot)

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) now has the right to tell late night host Jimmy Kimmel “in your face.”

It wasn’t exactly a slam-dunk, but Cruz, 47, defeated the 50-year-old Kimmel 11-9 in a one-on-one charity basketball game Saturday at the Texas Southern University’s Health and Physical Education Arena in Houston.

How did this happen?

Cruz challenged Kimmel to the game after the late night host called Cruz a "blobfish" on his show. The senator responded with a Twitter post challenging Kimmel to settle the matter on a basketball court.

About 4,000 people turned out for the game, which was riddled with desperation shots, “bricks” and air balls, according to published reports.

“Thankfully, for both parties, no one kept field goal percentage,” the Washington Examiner noted.

The display was entertaining at best and quite possibly basketball at its worst, according to reports.

“I have no actual moves,” Kimmel said before hitting the court. “This game’s going to take forever.”

Cruz's moves reflected his politics. The senator relied “hard on the right,” Jeff Eisenband, a senior editor for the Post Game wrote on Twitter.

The Washington Examiner gave the following account:

Cruz apologized to the game of basketball for the display on the court. Kimmel, meanwhile, jokingly asked two individuals in the stands if they wanted to finish the game for them and wondered while Cruz led 5-4 if they should have played to four points rather than 15.

They ultimately decided to play to 11 "in the spirit of bipartisanship."

"You’re a good sport, Kimmel told Cruz during the post-game ceremony. "I still think you’re a terrible senator."

How much money did they raise?

In all, they raised a total of nearly $80,000 for charity. Kimmel played for the Texas Children's Hospital and Cruz played for Generation One, Texas Charities, according to reports.

Clips from the game are scheduled to air on Kimmel’s show Monday night.

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