July 30, 2020 

Allisha Gray: Balling on the court and on Twitch

A look inside Allisha Gray’s offseason work, and how she streams

Welcome to The Next: A basketball newsroom brought to you by The IX. 24/7/365 women’s basketball coverage, written, edited and photographed by our young, diverse staff, dedicated to breaking news, analysis, historical deep dives and projections about the game we love.

Continue reading with a subscription to The Next

Get unlimited access to women’s basketball coverage and help support our hardworking staff of writers, editors, and photographers by subscribing today.

Join today

Subscribe to make sure this vital work, creating a pipeline of young, diverse media professionals to write, edit and photograph the great game, continues and grows. Paid subscriptions include some exclusive content, but the reason for subscriptions is a simple one: making sure our writers and editors creating 24/7/365 women’s basketball coverage get paid to do it.

Dallas Wings guard Allisha Gray (15) shoots during the WNBA game between the Dallas Wings and the Connecticut Sun at Mohegan Sun Arena, Uncasville, Connecticut, USA on May 14, 2019. Photo Credit: Chris Poss

Like many WNBA players, Allisha Gray worked on her game in the off-season, but it wasn’t just her on-court game, it was also her game on the sticks.

Over the off-season, Gray spent a lot of time honing in on her craft with the trainer, John Hollmon.

“I added a lot,” Gray told The Next on her off-season training with Hollmon. “I worked with John five times a week, I mean, it was just crazy how we crossed paths. This year is my first year training with him and we put in a lot of work. John is a great trainer, he taught me like one-on-one moves, counter moves and he prepared me well for this season. Shout-out to John and this ‘book bag’ I got now.”

Hollmon has played professionally in Bulgaria, Mexico, Germany, and China. He has 12+ years of coaching experience, coaches 17u boys, and is the owner and founder of Sports Total Athletic Training Professionals (STAT PRO).

STAT PRO is a sports-specific training service that designs training regimens specific to clients’ needs. They specialize in basketball training but also do personal fitness training and mental toughness training.

Gray said in an Instagram post on July 8, “I went from having a plastic bag to being transformed into having a book bag so now when I do moves I can be in my book bag rather than my plastic bag.”

She brought that off-season work with Hollmon to the court this past Sunday against the Atlanta Dream, making an instant impact, where she tied with teammate Arike Ogunbowale and led the team in scoring with 19 points. She followed that with 10 more points against the Liberty Wednesday night while providing her trademark disruptions on the defensive end.

But for Gray, being a “gamer” extends beyond the court.

“Being on Twitch is fun,” Gray said. “The pro is you get to interact with people and people get to see a different side of you. The con is for some reason, whatever, I do not know, that if they beat you on the video game you get a message like ‘this isn’t the WNBA.’ Like, what does the WNBA have to do with a video game? They be like ‘imagine trying to dunk, but can’t dunk in real life’ and I’m like ‘well technically a lot of us play video games that we actually can’t do in real life.’ So it’s a lot of like stereotypical stuff, but other than that it’s fun.”

Gray is an affiliate on the platform, which she achieved quickly once she began streaming. Requirements for affiliation on Twitch include: obtain 50 followers, stream for 8 hours, stream on seven different days, and have an average of three viewers. As an affiliate, the streamer is able to begin earning through a currency called “bits,” ads run on their channel, game sales, subscribers, and more.

On July 8, Gray’s former teammate and friend, Aerial Powers, announced on her Instagram that she will be hosting an all females NBA2K20 tournament inside the WNBA bubble in Bradenton, FL. It’s called “The Powerz Up Tournament” and will feature other notable players such as Brittney Griner, Angel McCoughtry, and Diamond DeShields.

“Yeah I do plan on competing in AP’s 2K tournament,” Gray said. “AP is the one who got me on the Twitch platform. I was already playing video games heavy so when corona hit and I was just in the house chillin’, I’m like ‘I feel like streaming.’ Kind of make it entertaining so people can watch me play because several people asked me to stream and I’m like ‘might as well, I mean I’m not doing anything else.’ It was a way to also keep me safe as well.”

Presently for Gray, though she has her streaming equipment with her in the WNBA bubble, the task at hand is not the gaming, but the on-court product. Not only from herself but the team as well.

Gray hasn’t decided whether or not she plans to stream while in the WNBA bubble but has it all with her just in case.

Written by Drew Ivery

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.