Howard Shu is the highest-ranked U.S. badminton player in men’s singles — and like many of the players on his team, he’s from Southern California. He’s also a shoe collector, with close to 100 pairs of sneakers.
In Asia, badminton is huge, and Shu feeds off that enthusiasm. "When we're playing in China or Indonesia," he says, "they're packed stadiums: 10-, 20,000 people." But, if badminton doesn't have the same respect in the U.S. that it does in Asia, Shu is able to shrug it off. After all, he's used to hearing challenges from people who whacked a birdie around as kids, and boast that they can take him on. "There's no way they could even score a point on me," he says.
And yes, if you wanted an All American Asian American team, well - you got it.