The NBA is currently in the midst of a suspension, so what is there to do basketball fans? Let me tell you, watch a basketball movie! Name a better way to reminisce about the sport we all know and love, I will be waiting. But anyways, much like my All-Star Baseball Movie Character Roster, I will be constructing the All-Star Basketball Movie Character Roster to give some ideas for any future movie night plans. This roster will include a starting five, a sixth man, four bench players, and a coach. Similar to the baseball roster, professional players that acted in basketball movies are left off the list. So for example, Michael Jordan in Space Jam and Shaquille O’Neal in Blue Chips are not options here.
Point Guard: Scott Howard from Teen Wolf
NBA Comparison: Russell Westbrook
Guys, he is literally a wolf. He has the speed and strength of a wild animal and he is playing basketball. The only problem with Howard, is not knowing which version of him will show up. Some days it could be the wolf and he will pack the stat sheet. Some days it might be the teenage boy and he struggles on the court. But I am betting on Howard, because when the wolf shows, it is game set match.
Shooting Guard: Billy Hoyle from White Men Can’t Jump
NBA Comparison: Jason Williams
Hoyle and Deane had to crack the starting lineup. The two’s pick and roll game would be nothing short of a spectacle to watch in an actual basketball game. But the problem with Hoyle is that he is not the most athletic human in the world. But what he brings to the table is veteran savvy, floor spacing, and some spectacular trash talk. Hoyle can start in my lineup any day of the week.
Small Forward: Sidney Deane from White Men Can’t Jump
NBA Comparison: Tim Hardaway
With his elite handles and vertical, Deane’s ability to turn in a highlight is unparalleled. His jump shot is not at the level as some of other characters in the lineup, but between him and Teen Wolf, the dunks and handles will give the audience a show.
Power Forward: Jimmy Chitwood from Hoosiers
NBA Comparison: Larry Bird
In today’s age of small ball, no basketball movie character fits the bill of a stretch four more than Jimmy Chitwood. He can create his own jump-shot, and if he is open, just chalk up three. Chitwood may be undersized, but what he lacks in size, he makes up for in heart. In the final moments of the state championship, Chitwood wants the ball and wins Hickory the game on a last second jumper. I want that in my starting forward, so Chitwood finds his way into the starting lineup.
Center: Jackie Moon from Semi-Pro
NBA Comparison: Bill Walton
Moon can stretch the floor as a big man, which is a key skill to have in today’s NBA. But what truly sets him apart is his useful coaching experience and his flashy style that fans cannot resist. Combine his sideburns with some sweatbands and a white man’s afro, and you get a player that will put cheeks in the seats. His on and off the court play make him the clear option at center.
Sixth Man: Calvin Cambridge from Like Mike
NBA Comparison: A child sized Michael Jordan
With his Air Jordan’s on, Cambridge literally becomes the best player in the entire NBA. Even at his young age and minimal size, Cambridge’s vertical is up there with the best of them, his handles are elite, and he can knock down a jumper. But he is still a child, and for that reason, he is my sixth man.
Thomas ‘Shep’ Sheppard from Above the Rim
NBA Comparison: Reggie Miller
Instead of taking another Above the Rim character with Kyle Watson, I took the player that stole the show in the final scene. Shep carved up the defense, finding space, and draining every shot he took. Sheppard also is not afraid of stepping up on defense as well. With all this talent, Shep probably could start, but there is simply too much talent in the starting lineup.
Chubby from Teen Wolf
NBA Comparison: Brian Scalabrine
No team is ever complete without a lovable player at the end of the bench. Chubby fits that role. He has every quality you look for in a tenth man. He can set a mean screen, will hit the boards, knows the fundamentals, but most importantly, knows his role. Even though he may not see the court too much, Chubby is an essential piece to have on the bench.
Clarence Withers (AKA Coffee Black AKA Downtown “Funky Stuff” Malone AKA Sugar Dunkerton AKA “Jumping” Johnny Johnson) from Semi-Pro
NBA Comparison: Derrick Jones Jr.
Another member of the Flint Tropics cracks the basketball movie roster. His athleticism truly sets him apart from any other option. On top of that, he was the first basketball player to finish an alley oop. But the reason that Coffee Black makes the list is his loyalty. Even after getting traded to the San Antonio Spurs, Withers rejoined the Tropics to help them win the game and reach their goal of fourth place.
Joe Cooper “Coop” from Baseketball
NBA Comparison: Jason Kapono
If you need a marksman to come off the bench, look no further than Joe Cooper. Coop demonstrated his ability to hit from really anywhere during his time with the Milwaukee Beers. Combine that with his ability to step up in the clutch, and you get a sniper off the bench that truly has ‘in the gym range’.
Head Coach: Pete Bell from Blue Chips
Norman Dale from Hoosiers would have made a decent option here, but I need more of a modern way of thinking. Plus, Bell has shown he can handle attitudes during his time with Western University. He will need to be able to handle attitudes too as this team is full of them. Bell knows the game and will know how to coach the small ball lineup I have created better than Dale.
- Norman Dale from Hoosiers
- Coach Carter from Coach Carter
In this troubling time of the NBA’s hiatus, try to enjoy basketball in different ways. As I mentioned, there are plenty of basketball movies out there. So watch a few! After you watch a few, construct your lineup. Who would you have in your starting five? Discuss with us on twitter!
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