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.
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"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."
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.