For those of you who practice the ritual of New Year’s resolutions, you better get your submissions in quick.
Like it or not, 2020 is right around the corner, forcing us to kiss the 2010s goodbye. As the new decade begins and we forge on into the future, we’re reminded of the atrocities committed in basketball in 2019 and before and start the process of atonement through positive change.
Those of us who play pick up basketball have watched these insidious habits seep into our game, and you know exactly who you are. But it’s the New Year, and that means resolutions for all the mistakes you’ve been making. If you or someone you love has harmed the game of basketball in any of these ways within the last year, now is the time to move on toward a better destiny.
New Year’s Resolutions: Please, Please Stop Doing These Things
Basketball is a simple game: you put the ball through the hoop. That’s why it’s so painful when people manage to screw it up.
Below you’ll find a few ideas for New Year’s resolutions for hoopers, and if you are someone who has committed these crimes against the sport, I urge you to consider absolving them as your top priority in 2020. It’s that important.
No More Obnoxious Stepback Threes That Are Totally Travels and You Can’t Make Anyway
This is open gym at the local JCC, not primetime at the Staples Center. You are Jeremy Griffin, a bank teller who never made his high school’s varsity team, not James Harden, who makes millions specifically because he is capable of pulling this off. Calm down.
No one else on the court is having fun watching you brick triple after triple. We aren’t impressed that you can take three steps without dribbling and chuck up a prayer that swishes once every seventh try, an efficiency rating even a bureaucrat would scoff at.
Pass the ball and know your place: a dude playing pick up with strangers because he isn’t good enough for anything else.
Take Off That Shooting Sleeve, You Lemon
Never wear a shooting sleeve. Never. Don’t ever do it. The only exceptions are children, if you’re playing on television, or if you’re a child playing on television, and it’s only okay for children to do it because their tiny brains haven’t developed the ability to fully process shame yet.
It does not improve your game in any way, and we all know this. There is no reason to wear a shooting sleeve except that you think it makes you look sweet. But unless you are sweet, your shooting sleeve won’t fool anyone. And since you’re here at the Y missing layups, I don’t think you’re sweet.
We Aren’t At War, Chill Out
This is an impromptu game of basketball in a public place. Your shot at a championship isn’t hinging on this game’s outcome.
Stop playing way too physical and endangering people for no reason. Stop talking trash to strangers like there have been people reading about this matchup in the newspapers. Stop screaming, “AND ONE!” after every drive, even when you miss your shot.
Does it look like there are any scouts here? No, only custodians who are more occupied with the dust on the floor than your game. Don’t make me sorry for coming out today.
Help Make 2020 a Success
This is only a small selection of the many New Year’s resolutions hoopers across the world need to adopt. Don’t let this list limit you. If you know you’ve been committing faux pas, make a difference: make some New Year’s resolutions and plan for 2020 to be your best basketball year yet (and way better for those around you, too).