It looks like Miami Heat power forward/center Chris "Birdman" Andersen has more ink to his name -- this time in the form of an endorsement deal.
Birdman has just been named the official celebrity spokesperson for Hard Rock energy Drinks, the rock 'n' roll-themed beverage with local roots. The energy drink is produced, marketed, and distributed by Enterprise Beverage Group, a majority-owned subsidiary of the Seminole Tribe of Florida.
Birdman (or sometimes Birdzilla -- but never Chris, as he pointed out) was on hand this past weekend for a photo shoot for the beverage, accompanied by the Hard Rock Energy Girls, a bevy of beauties wearing the pin-up equivalent of a Miami Heat uniform.
Andersen, the 6-foot, 10-inch, forward/center recently re-signed with the Miami Heat in a multi-year contract. In a short press conference before the shoot, the player, known for both his colorful style and tattoos, said his fans played a role in his continued tenure with the Heat. "The way the fans embraced me. That has a lot to do with the choice to come back to Miami."
Birdman said that he's looking forward to the changes in the Heat. "I'm going to be a point center. I'll rebound. I'll make some play calls. Just give me the ball. I'll do everything. I'll even coach a little bit."
The player acknowledged a lasting friendship with LeBron James, after his return to the Cleveland Cavaliers. "When you win a championship with a group of guys, you never lose a bond like that."
Birdman said that although Hard Rock is more synonymous with music than sports, the endorsement makes sense.
"I do have on my arm a tattoo stating 'a real rock 'n' roller.' In my previous life, I think I actually was a rock 'n' roller. But now I'm an athlete. This is the way the cards were dealt to me."
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Birdman says that he's hoping to work with the energy drink company to design his own unique flavor in the future. So what would Birdman taste like if he were a beverage? "Green tea and ginseng." We'd buy that.