The 18 Unofficial Rules of Streetball

The 18 Unofficial Rules of Streetball

"Free throws do not exist. The free throw line is just there for decoration."

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The United States is known to have an extremely rich basketball culture throughout the entire country. National tournaments in the AAU circuit are hosted from coast to coast, where college coaches begin to recruit players as young as 8-years-old. However, the real culture lies within the gated castles of hot summer concrete, white spray painted courts and netless hoops. Kids from poor neighborhoods in Chicago, New York, Philadelphia etc. make their name known through countless games of hard nose streetball. Each court may have different sets of rules, but this list will generally give you an idea on what the street culture is all about and will help ease you onto the courts and play with just about anyone!

1. We count scores by 1s and 2s, not 2s and 3s.

2. You cannot win a game by one, you must call deuce if both teams are at game point. Whether or not a game can be won with a 3 pointer is up to the rules of that court.

3. Free throws do not exist. The free throw line is there just for decoration.

4. There is no foul limit for each player, but if you foul too hard or often, you will be threatened to a fist fight.

5. The closer you are to your friend/family member in normal life, the more intense the rivalry when they are on the opposing team. Intense trash talk and threats of physical altercations are expected.

6. No cherry picking. EVER.

7. There is no such thing as over the back, 3 second violation, etc. The only fouls that will count will be reach-ins.

8. Half court games are MAKE IT AND TAKE IT (Teams who score will keep possession). Full court games are alternating possessions after each score

9. In half court games, the team on defense that rebounds the ball or gets a block MUST clear the ball to the 3 point line before attempting to score. However, STEALS and AIRBALLS are considered a fast break and does not need to be cleared.

10. If you are NOT in the game, you have NO authority to make any calls. Only the guys/girls playing can call fouls or dribbling violations

11. Dudes on the court with fancy Nike or NBA gear and wearing his favorite player's jersey may be complete trash. It is recommended to NOT pick him for your team. The best player on the court will most likely wear the cheapest and most worn out T-shirt, shorts, and shoes. Never be afraid to pick the selfless fundamental player.

12. Shirts vs skins will suffice if needed for jerseys when trying to identify who is on what team.

13. Calling "AND ONE!" is NOT the same as calling a foul and may not be called a foul.

14. Location of courts matter. Indoor courts promote teamwork and better jump shooting while outdoor courts hinder jump shooting and semi-organized plays for some reason.

15. The only acceptable form of defense is MAN TO MAN. You will be REMOVED from the court if you call for your team to play ZONE

16. The on-ball defender and ball carrier are the highest ranking referees at any given moment in the game unless a player makes an obvious foul or other rule violation

17. The losing team has the right to demand a rematch referred to as "Run that back" or "Run it back" after an intense game.

18. Your team can only "Run it Back" when there is NOBODY waiting to play the next game. If people are waiting, please take your L and depart the court and wait for the next match

Hope these rules were great help! BALL UP!

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To The Coach Who Ruined The Game For Me

We can't blame you completely, but no one has ever stood up to you before.
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I know you never gave it a second thought, the idea that you're the reason I and many others, never went any farther in our athletic careers.

I know you didn’t sincerely care about our mental health, as long as we were physically healthy and our bodies were working enough to play. It’s obvious your calling wasn’t coaching and you weren’t meant to work with young adults, some who look to you as a parent figure or a confidant.

I also know that if we were to express our concerns about the empty feeling we began to feel when we stepped onto the court, you wouldn’t have taken the conversation seriously because it wasn’t your problem.

I know we can't blame you completely, no one has ever stood up to you before. No one said anything when girls would spend their time in the locker room crying because of something that was said or when half the team considered quitting because it was just too much.

We can't get mad at the obvious favoritism because that’s how sports are played.

Politics plays a huge role and if you want playing time, you have to know who to befriend. We CAN get mad at the obvious mistreatment, the empty threats, the verbal abuse, “it's not what you say, its how you say it.”

We can get mad because a sport that we loved so deeply and had such passion for, was taken away from us single-handedly by an adult who does not care. I know a paycheck meant more to you than our wellbeing, and I know in a few years you probably won’t even remember who we are, but we will always remember.

We will remember how excited we used to get on game days and how passionate we were when we played. How we wanted to continue on with our athletic careers to the next level when playing was actually fun. We will also always remember the sly remarks, the obvious dislike from the one person who was supposed to support and encourage us.

We will always remember the day things began to change and our love for the game started to fade.

I hope that one day, for the sake of the young athletes who still have a passion for what they do, you change.

I hope those same athletes walk into practice excited for the day, to get better and improve, instead of walking in with anxiety and worrying about how much trouble they would get into that day. I hope those athletes play their game and don’t hold back when doing it, instead of playing safe, too afraid to get pulled and benched the rest of the season.

I hope they form an incredible bond with you, the kind of bond they tell their future children about, “That’s the coach who made a difference for me when I was growing up, she’s the reason I continued to play.”

I don’t blame you for everything that happened, we all made choices. I just hope that one day, you realize that what you're doing isn’t working. I hope you realize that before any more athletes get to the point of hating the game they once loved.

To the coach that ruined the game for me, I hope you change.

Cover Image Credit: Author's photo

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The Anaheim Ducks Are In A World Of Pain

The Ducks have now lost 19 out of their last 21 games amidst a multitude of problems and a rebuild may be at its beginning stages after Randy Carlyle's firing from head coach.

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On December 17, 2018, the Anaheim Ducks had just defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins on the road 4-2, and sat in a playoff spot with a 19-11-5 record, good for 43 points and 2nd in the Pacific Division. Since then, the Ducks have lost 19 out of their last 21 games, going 2-15-4 during that stretch, now sitting at 21-26-9 and 51 points on February 12th, eight points out of a playoff spot in the Western Conference. After their last loss, head coach Randy Carlyle was finally axed and general manager Bob Murray stepped in as the interim coach. Many issues exist currently and for the foreseeable future in Anaheim, which could see its first sustained rebuild since the early 2000s, where the team missed the playoffs three years in a row.

One of the Ducks' bigger issues is the lack of goal scoring throughout the lineup. The leading player in goals is forward Jakob Silfverberg, with 12 in 47 games played. That's not enough for a team that is 56 games into the season. The overall points production is quite anemic too. Captain and center Ryan Getzlaf leads the club with 36 points in 50 games, and he is the only player with more than 30 points to this date.

Injuries are also factoring into the equation: center Adam Henrique and defenseman Brandon Montour are the only Ducks to have played in every game this season, with players such as forwards in Silfverberg, Getzlaf, Rickard Rakell, Corey Perry, Ryan Kesler, and Ondrej Kase as well as defensemen Cam Fowler and Hampus Lindholm, and goaltender Ryan Miller all spending at least five games on the injured reserve.

With so many players in and out of the lineup, not to mention that most of the fill-ins are inexperienced at the NHL level, it is hard to develop any sort of chemistry for an extended period of time. Goaltender John Gibson has been unable to maintain grade A performance in net, as his save percentage is now at 0.914, below where he started the season. With all of this considered, the Ducks have a tough future ahead when considering their salary cap situation.

Perry and Getzlaf, both of who will turn 34 in May, have a cap hit of $8.625 and $8.25 million for the next two years after the 2018-19 season, while Kesler, who turns 35 in August, makes $6.825 million for the next 3 years after this season concludes. Perry has only played in five games this year due to injuries, Getzlaf's production is declining and not up to par with how much he is paid, and Kesler has only six points in 48 games, and he also only played in 44 games last season due to injuries, scoring just 14 points.

These expensive contracts are untradeable unless they attach a younger asset in a trade, like prospects Sam Steel, Max Jones, Maxim Comtois, or Troy Terry. It is possible that Kesler and/or Perry will be bought out of their contracts in the offseason, meaning they will save money against the salary cap for the remainder of those contract years, but will have portions of that contract counting against the cap for a few years more.

Despite these bad contracts which currently prevent the Ducks from signing more than one big free agent, the aforementioned prospects will most likely see more substantial time in Anaheim next season, which could boost the club, but it is unlikely that any of them take the league by storm to make the Ducks a contender again. For this to happen, young forwards like Rakell, Kase, and Daniel Sprong will have to exceed expectations, while the defensive core will also need to step it up compared to their performance this, which makes them look overpaid.

As it stands, the Ducks are 4th in the 2019 NHL Draft Lottery and could see a highly touted prospect come to Anaheim next year, but the current roster and prospect core will need bounce back seasons or the management group will be forced to blow up much of the roster, which would almost guarantee missing the playoffs again.

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