Brandon Armstrong and Famous Los are two of the funniest dudes you’ll ever meet. Scroll your social media feed on a random NBA night and you’re sure to see their videos dominating across a bunch of platforms. But it wasn’t that long ago that the two former college teammates turned internet sensations met via Facebook Messenger before arriving on campus to play basketball at Lincoln Memorial University.
“I was on the team website and I was seeing all the players that had signed,” Armstrong told DIME. “That’s when I found Los. I searched his name on Facebook and we messaged back and forth. I remember when I first messaged him and said we’d be playing together. His response was ‘who the hell are you?’”
The first thing they did after getting to school wouldn’t surprise anyone who know them.
“When we first moved in and got to campus,” Armstrong said, “Los and I went to the all girls dorm and knocked on every female’s door to introduce ourselves.”
From then on, the two became partners in crime. Los would move on and transfer to Union College, while Armstrong would stay at Lincoln Memorial. The two stayed in touch and eventually played against one another.
“I came to play against Brandon and Lincoln Memorial but I had forgotten my shoes,” Los told DIME. “So I went into their locker room and asked my old teammates for a pair of shoes while they were doing scouting report. I was so ready to play them that I went to the gym without my shoes.”
Armstrong has his own spin on the story.
“So he walks in while we were doing the scouting report and we had their starting five and the bench players listed but Los had a star by his name,” Armstrong said on the situation. “After the star, Los was listed as 4’11 and 80 pounds. My coach knew they weren’t good, so we just had some fun with it.”
They both pursued professional basketball in the United State and overseas. But just as a slim few get the chance to play college ball, even fewer can make a career of it. Luckily in today’s NBA, you don’t have to be a star on the court to be around the game.
Armstrong got the idea to impersonate other players after watching Westbrook’s smiling face in still photographs. Westbrook was often smiling off the court while his play had a totally different emotion. So Armstrong decided to do an impersonation of Westbrook’s on-court attitude.
With Los, it came from having reactions and impersonations in a bathroom mirror. He got on the national stage with a video of him calling out NBA players telling them he could beat them.
“I just had the idea of getting out on a porch and dribbling a basketball while calling out NBA guys,” Los said. “So I called out a bunch of guys and started tagging them in it. They all laughed and shared it, and that’s when things started to take off.”
Los and Armstrong have since created a platform that is big enough for them to become stars. The two who once had dreams of playing in the NBA created a lane that is unlike any other around the league. They have the sort of visibility that most NBA players don’t even have due to their viral content that still feels genuine to who they are.
While other leagues use all caps and are in the business of protecting the logo, the NBA has fun with itself. And that’s where Los and Armstrong come in.
The two are now roommates and have started to collaborate creatively. They recently spent time at their first big event together, traveling to All-Star Weekend in New Orleans where they produced a number of different videos and participated in events over the weekend. As they’ve grown in popularity, they’ve become better friends.
Although Los was unable to compete in the Celebrity All-Star game, Armstrong ended up taking home M.V.P. as Los watched from the sidelines.
“It was an amazing experience and it’s still surreal being the MVP of the Celebrity game,” Armstrong told DIME. “Even though it was just the Celebrity game, just being on that stage was fun.”
Los was injured, but says “I could’ve had 50 out there,” he says jokingly.
With more than 100 million YouTube views between the two of them, they’re absolutely running the comedy and impersonation business of the NBA. From Harden to Westbrook, everyone knows who they are and the two aren’t really phased by the fame. However, for Los meeting Steph Curry was slightly different.
“When I was out at the West practice sitting on the baseline a lot of them knew me,” Los said. “I was a little uncomfortable because I hadn’t met some of the players but once Harden was out there, boom. I felt much more comfortable. So we started talking and that’s when Davis, Kawhi, and Westbrook came over. We talked and then Steph was behind him. Steph is the reason I am who I am. So it was like those four were trees if I was in the middle (which he was), and I couldn’t see Steph behind them. So once they moved to the side, it was like an angel was in the building. Steph was just right there staring at me. I’m from North Carolina where he’s from and it was just crazy.”
Some may question whether the videos can continue, but Los and Armstrong seem to be pushing further and inviting more people to join the party. Armstrong recently added UPROXX video host to his profile, with his HangTime segment. The next step for them is to continue this incredible journey while branching out even more as they look to improve upon their surprising rise to internet fame.
Whether it’s one million views, ten million views, 100 million views, or shoutouts from the biggest names in the NBA, they seemingly aren’t taking what they have for granted. While Los and Armstrong are never going to be NBA superstars on the court, this might just be the next best thing.