More than any other sport, when I watch basketball, I’m always able to convince myself that I could score in an actual professional game. No special rules, no free unabated shots with no one trying to defend me. Just letting me suit up with a team and stepping onto the court like any other NBA player. I could do it.
I think it’s because the game of basketball is so simple in its design. Your objective is the simplest of all, something you really figured out as a mush-brained baby. This round ball goes into that cylinder. Anybody can do that.
So since I’ve already got what it takes to physically make it happen, I think I’m about 95% on my way to being able to score a basket during an NBA game. The rest is just willpower. Plus, there are a few ways I could accomplish it:
- Driving to the hoop is out of the question because I would get my head lopped off about ten rows into the stands, but if I’m going up against an atrocious team like the Philadelphia 76ers, there’s no reason why I can’t score on a little pick-and-pop jumper from, say, 15 feet out.
- I probably won’t be playing any defense, since I don’t really want to see my ankles get shattered on a crossover move. So I could potentially play pretty loose near halfcourt and then take off on a fast-break opportunity. A layup should be easy enough if LeBron James isn’t bearing down on me from behind, and if I do live to tell the tale of the time LeBron James fouled me so hard I somehow traveled 3,000 years into the future, I suppose I would consider a free throw. If I’m going to take free throws, I have to earn them, and that’s a pretty good way to do it. Plus, with 20,000 people staring me down as I do it, I bet it would be just as difficult to make a shot from the charity stripe (but I’d still definitely do it).
- I’ve seen guys like Allen Iverson and Carmelo Anthony play enough to know that scoring is all about the volume of shots you take. So for as long as I’m out there, I imagine I could make AT LEAST one shot out of 40 or 50 attempts.
I understand that the speed of the NBA game is mind-blowingly fast. But these aren’t superheroes, and at some point, a defender is going to be just a touch slow, giving me the opportunity to take a shot. A coach just needs to leave me out there for 30 minutes and in that time, I know I could score two, maybe even three, points.