Entrepreneur Thomas Fields took his company, Grind Basketball, and its products to the Sharks on ABC’s “Shark Tank” to see if he could get a deal from one of the investors.
According to the episode synopsis, “An athlete from Houston, Texas, takes his shot at a deal with the Sharks after introducing his portable basketball shooting machine.”
The entrepreneur was able to pitch his products to Sharks Mark Cuban, Kevin O’Leary, Lori Greiner, Barbara Corcoran and guest Shark Alex Rodriguez.
Here’s what you should know about Grind Basketball on “Shark Tank”:
1. The Grind Basketball Machine is the First Portable Basketball Shooting Machine
According to the company’s website, the Grind Basketball Machine is the first of its kind. The machine is meant to be an efficient way for athletes to work on shooting, using just one ball.
“Sometimes less is more,” the website reads. “It’s not about shooting until your arm falls off. We focus on developing great habits for players.”
The site says that players can practice over 500 shots in an hour using the Grind Basketball Machine if they incorporate Grind’s No Standing Rule, which includes teaching players how to move without the ball, catch and attack the ball, make shots under fatigue and perfect their footwork.
The site also states that the “ideal number of shots to take per day for a high school player is 450-500.”
2. Fields Came Up With the Idea in 2011
Fields was a high-school athlete trying to get better in 2011, according to the company website, and that’s how he came up with the idea. He was getting ready to shoot hoops at 5 a.m. outside of his high school when he got annoyed since his coach was late to let him into the school.
The site says that Fields had been recovering from his second ACL tear, and he needed the extra time to get better. That’s when he came up with the idea for Grind.
“I just started sketching a design for a shooting machine that I could’ve used right there at the time,” Fields said, according to the website. “I got more and more into it until it became an obsession. I knew I had something.”
He built his first prototype in 2014.
3. The Machine Can Fit in a Duffel Bag
Because the machine was created to be portable, it was important for Fields that it be small enough that it could actually be brought places.
“We didn’t have a lot of money and I wanted to be able to take it anywhere,” Fields said, according to the website. “What better way than to be able to fold it into a duffel bag and be able to take it to the park with me.”
Not only is the machine portable, but Grind is also working on an app and software that will help players track analytics and see how they compare to other people using a Grind machine.
4. The Grind Basketball Machine Is Made to Help Athletes Practice Efficiently
Fields played basketball from the time he was seven years old through high school, according to the website. Fields came up with the company’s mission based on his high school coach’s work ethic.
“Our first practice was on the first day of school at 5 a.m.,” Fields said, according to the company website. “Who does that? He had an obsessive work ethic, and I loved it. That was the foundation for Grind. I took it and ran with it.”
Fields says that players can practice 10 times more efficiently with the machine than without it.
5. The Machine is Available for Purchase Online
At the time of writing, the Grind Basketball Machine is available to purchase online.
The Grind Machine is being sold for $1,595.00 with payment plans available. If purchased now, the machine would be delivered in November 2021.
Tune in to “Shark Tank” to see if Fields can score a deal from one of the Sharks.
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