The City Game

May 25th, 2010

The city game. Cast together with metal backboards, holed, and single rims with no nets. Never a net. Elevated F train in the background, deep in the hear of south Brooklyn. Elevated F train in the background, deep in the heart of south-central Brooklyn, in Gravesend. My problem with non-netted rims is a shooting one. I like to see the ball go through the net. Any net. Chains work, but they tear up the ball. I enjoy the sounds of a well placed swish. Right through. It helps gather perspective, depth for the shot, and helps with having “touch.” Maybe I’ve been spoiled by having nets on most of the hoops I’ve played on growing up. And there is a certain machismo to not caring about whether or not there is a net on the basket. I get that, but don’t buy into it. It is simply a preference. I still love the city game.

Basketball is perfect for a city like New York, modeled on the idea of building UP rather than o u t. The game makes up for the lack in open space spread outwards, by using the space granted by the sky, upwards. The air between the court and the top of the backboard are basketball’s added playing field dimensions. Playing the game up there, something I’ve never known, adds to the game’s beauty.


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