Basketball was my segue into sports so it lives in a special place in my heart.  My first sporting memories occurred during holidays, sitting with my dad and my uncles who breathed only when the game was over.  This was back in the 80s.  Besides learning the rules of the game, this is also when I learned to yell, and swear, at the TV.

These days, the game relies on fast breaks and fouls so be patient throughout the many starts and stops.  It is more about the drama that exists between the two teams playing.  The NBA marketing group really highlights the rivalry that lives between certain teams.  That is where, as girls, we can really get into the emotional side of the game to keep us interested.

The rules are really simple.  You will always see five players per team are on the court at the same time.  Players are allowed to substitute in and out during the game, but only during a break in the play.  The team on offense has the ball and they have 24 seconds to shoot the ball into their hoop.  If the ball is shot within the line painted in an arc on the floor, the basket counts as 2 points.  If the player shoots it beyond the arc, or 3 point line, then the basket counts for 3 points.  If a player is fouled in the act of shooting, then they are awarded a free-throw which counts as 1 point.

If the ball misses the hoop, then there is a chance for any player on the court to collect the rebound.  Any rebound is tough to grab, but an offensive rebound is a great accomplishment.  Sometimes a player scores points in the double digits and rebounds in the double digits; this is called a double-double.  If a player also assists in the double digits this is called a triple-double and means you are watching a really good player.  An assist is awarded when a player passes the ball to a teammate and that player scores immediately.

In professional basketball, players have an allowance of 6 fouls each.  If a player fouls another player 6 times, they have ‘fouled-out’ and is no longer eligible to play in the game.  That can be costly for a team.  Along the same lines, free throws are just that…free.  So, it is annoying to me that a professional basketball player misses more free-throws than he makes.  There are a lot of games decided by few points or less.  Again, drama.

If you are having trouble keeping interest in basketball, my advice is pay the greatest amount of attention to the 4th quarter.  A team can go on a run and really make it exciting.  Your man will just be glad that you watching some of the game and getting familiar with his players.


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