Paul Sturgess (basketball)

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Paul Sturgess
Personal information
Born (1987-11-25) 25 November 1987 (age 31)[1]
Loughborough, Leicestershire, England
Listed height7 ft 7 in (2.31 m)
Listed weight325 lb (147 kg)
Career information
High schoolBurleigh Community College
(Loughborough, Leicestershire)
Playing career2011–present
Career history
2011–2013Harlem Globetrotters
2013–2014Texas Legends
2014–2015Cheshire Phoenix

Paul Sturgess (born 25 November 1987) is an English former professional basketball player who last played for the Cheshire Phoenix of the British Basketball League. He was officially measured barefeet by Guinness World Records in November 2011 at 7 ft 7.26 in (2.32 m) and 325 lb (147 kg). Sturgess was the tallest college basketball player in the United States.[2]


Paul "Tiny" Sturgess was "drafted" by the Harlem Globetrotters in August 2011[3] and is the tallest ever to play for the team.[1][4] He joined the team with fellow rookie Jonte "Too Tall" Hall, who, at 5 ft 2 in (1.57 m) was 2.5 ft (76 cm) shorter than Sturgess, and who was at the time the shortest Globetrotters player ever.[5]

Sturgess wears a size 19 shoe.[6][7] He is the tallest man in Britain after Neil Fingleton, who was 7 ft 7.5 in (2.32 m) tall, unexpectedly died on 25 February 2017. Examinations as a teenager revealed that his growth is healthy and not the result of disorder, but rather he possesses familial tall stature—that is to say his height is genetic. His biological father is 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m), and there are other tall members in his family although his mother is 5 ft 5 in (1.65 m) and his younger sister is 5 ft 6 in (1.68 m).[8] He featured prominently in the 2007 ITV1 television documentary Supersize Kids: Britain's Tallest Teens when he was 19 and playing at Florida Institute of Technology.

Sturgess enjoys playing many other sports and before concentrating on basketball also played golf and football.[8] He started playing team basketball at age 14 when he was 5 ft 6 in (1.68 m), was 7 ft (2.1 m) aged 16 playing at Burleigh Community College, and was 7 ft 2 in (2.18 m) when he graduated high school at age 18. A growth spurt during ages of 16 and 17 resulted in a 1 ft (30 cm) of height added within a single year. Sturgess can hold the 10 ft (3.0 m) high rim whilst standing. He declined offers to play professional basketball in Europe, preferring to pursue basketball in the US.

On 1 November 2013, Sturgess was selected by the Springfield Armor in the third round of the 2013 NBA Development League Draft.[9] On 4 November 2013, he was traded to the Texas Legends where he played for the rest of the season.[10]

On 19 November 2014 he was signed by Cheshire Phoenix of the British Basketball League.[11]

Later Sturgess transferred back to the Harlem Globetrotters act, this time being part of the arranged opposition.[12] In the re-formed Washington Generals Sturgess adopted a mask and the pseudonym of "Cager", adopting a villainous role.[13]

Immediately following his basketball career, he became a motivational speaker, mostly for primary school aged children.[14]


  1. ^ a b "Tiny - Harlem Globetrotters Basketball". Harlem Globetrotters. Retrieved 26 December 2011.
  2. ^ Morrison, Dave (29 August 2009). "Cougars' signee Sturgess brings a lot to the table". Register-Herald. Beckley, WV. Retrieved 26 December 2011.
  3. ^ "Paul's enjoying high life with basketball legends". Leicester Mercury. Leicestershire, UK. 5 November 2011. Retrieved 26 December 2011.
  4. ^ "Harlem Globetrotters Announce 2012". Harlem Globetrotters. 7 October 2011. Retrieved 26 December 2011.
  5. ^ "Too Tall - Harlem Globetrotters Basketball". Harlem Globetrotters. Retrieved 26 December 2011.
  6. ^ Covitz, Randy (24 March 2010). "-and-england "U.S. college basketball's tallest player is 7-foot-7" and from England". Standard-Examiner. Ogden, UT. Retrieved 26 December 2011.
  7. ^ "Loughborough basketball player attracting big clubs". Leicester Mercury. Leicestershire, UK. 12 April 2010. Retrieved 26 December 2011.
  8. ^ a b AP (29 November 2009). "7-foot-8 Sturgess honing game at NAIA school". Sun Journal. Lewiston, ME. Retrieved 26 December 2011.
  9. ^ Armor Draft 7 Players in 2013 NBA D-League Draft
  10. ^ Legends Complete Three Trades, Finalize Training Camp Roster Archived 9 November 2013 at the Wayback Machine
  11. ^ World's tallest player Paul Sturgess signs with Cheshire Phoenix
  12. ^ "Harlem Globetrotters in Venice today". 10 December 2016. Retrieved 20 March 2018.
  13. ^ "Cager - The Globetrotter's Biggest Nightmare | Washington Generals". Retrieved 20 March 2018.
  14. ^ Tallest Man in England, at 7 Feet, 7 Inches, Gets His First Suit

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