At 28 years old, Chelsea Gray already has a lengthy list of accomplishments as a pro basketball player. She's a former first-round pick, a three-time WNBA All-Star and she won the WNBA Championship in 2016. However, something she has yet to do in her basketball career is compete in the Olympics. That's expected to change this summer, though, when the USA Women's National Team looks to win its seventh straight Olympic gold medal. Alongside basketball legends like Sue Bird and Diana Taurasi, Gray could help keep Team USA's reign of dominance alive.
As part of our preparation for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, NBC Olympics sent questionnaires to a wide range of athletes to learn more about their lives on and off the field of play.
Here’s some of what we found out about Chelsea Gray:
Tell us about your family.
My parents' names are Vickey and James Gray and they have been married for over 30 years. I have one brother, Javon Gray. My two cousins are close to me, so I refer to them as my brothers, and their names are Steven Crawford and Sean Watkins. My fiancee's name is Tipesa Moorer (soon to be Tipesa Gray).
Who do you live with?
My fiancee and I live in our home in Little Elm, TX. We've lived there since June 2019.
Parent influence on athletic career?
My parents were huge in my athletic career at a young age. They let me try all different types of sports and activities to see what sparked my interest. They would take me to a lot of my practices and games. I could probably count on one hand in which at least one parent was not at my basketball game. My two older brothers were the ones that first put a ball in my hand. They were the ones that would be in the backyard shooting and practicing with me until the lights came on.
Where does your family come from?
My family has a background of living in Louisiana. However, they have lived most of their lives in Oakland, CA. Up until college, I lived both in Manteca and in the Bay Area.
How has your hometown shaped who you are today?
Whenever I explain that I am from Northern California, people can always tell. Northern California is a lot more low maintenance, chill, and just a different speed then Southern CA. More specifically, I'm very prideful when it comes to me saying that I was raised in the Bay Area. First thing I do for people is play Bay Area music. We have our own kind of sound. From E-40 to G-Eazy, they all have a familiar undertone that lets you know that a Bay area person is on the song.
Typical training day?
Training each day really depends on what I would like my schedule to look like that week. Each day could be about six hours of training. I have tried to consistently sleep for eight hours every night.
What's your favorite workout?
I don't have a favorite, but I love working out with my strength guy Leo Johnson in Houston, TX.
What's the most grueling workout you've ever done?
Have you ever been seriously injured?
I have had multiple surgeries on my knee, ankle, and shoulder. My knee injuries were in college, and they were the most difficult injuries I have ever had. I hurt my knee towards the end of both my junior and senior year of college. It taught me how to fight and work hard for my dream. It allowed me to learn so much about myself and how to make things work when that's one of the few options I have.
Earliest memory of playing basketball?
My earliest memory of playing/seeing my sport was at 4 years old and I watched my older brother play basketball. I just wanted to play with my older brothers and all the boys that were in the street playing after school.
Anyone tell you that you wouldn't succeed?
At a young age, the people I competed against told me I was too small to compete at a high level. I just worked hard and tried to beat out everyone I competed against. After my injuries, I was told that I need to find what's next because my career might be over.
Do you have any hidden talents?
I am really good at impersonating the people I am frequently around. I am also good at mimicking the way people shoot a basketball.
Yes, I always put on my right sock and shoe first.
Advice you'd give a young player?
I would say to dedicate your time in energy at trying to be the best at what you're doing.