Iman Shumpert and Teyana Taylor weren’t looking for each other, but, serendipitously, they’re both hard to miss.
It was 2011 when the recently drafted NBA rookie and the dancer/model/singer/style muse first crossed paths at a New York party. Taylor, who several years prior had been feted on My Super Sweet Sixteen, was perched on a railing, needing a respite from her 7-inch Versace heels, when the 6-foot-5 Shumpert strolled over to say hello.
“He came up to me and tried to talk to me, but I was in a relationship, so I kinda like…” Taylor recalled on Vlad TV in 2014, miming not being super-responsive to her future husband’s charms. She didn’t give him the cold shoulder or anything, she clarified, but “he was turned up, everybody was turned up, and I was just like [shrug], ‘OK, thank you.'”
After that, the Harlem-born artist would see the New York Knicks guard around and “this dude’s always so turned up, so outspoken, full of personality,” she said fondly. But, “I was in my situation so I never paid no mind, he was just cool.”