Cleaning the Glass: Rebounding Makes Hall of Famers

Imagine tying your shoes. Your mind didn’t instantly put a tied shoe on your foot. First you put your shoe on, grabbed the laces, crossed those laces and on and on. You went through the fundamental steps of tying your shoes in your head.

There are fundamentals in anything and everything, especially in the world of sports. Fundamentals is probably the second most muttered word from the know-it-all in the stands. If you sit in the right section you might even get them used consecutively.

The fundamentals of basketball, or at least what should be fundamental, could fill a wall-sized list. Dribbling, passing, shooting and rebounding are the ones that come to mind first, rebounding being the one that sadly gets forgotten about.

You can go to any high school basketball game across the country and if you listen closely can hear a majority of everyone in the gymnasium scream “box out” at the same time. If the visitors keep getting the rebound the cry will only grow louder and louder until something gives.

Rebounding is forgotten by many players, because it isn’t as sexy as putting up points. If chicks dig the long-ball in baseball, they dig the guy who puts up 22 a night on the hardwood. If these chicks knew what they were actually looking for they’d be checking out the guy who is boxing his guy out of the gym. The brute.

Dennis Rodman made a career out of rebounding the basketball. It is hard to sacrifice your own point potential to just make darn sure your team gets the ball back anytime the ball goes up and doesn’t go through the net. If you get rebounds, you get results.

The top 14 rebounders of all-time in the NBA are in the Basketball Hall of Fame or will be when they are eligible. 17 for sure out of the top 20 will be in the Hall, that number could go up to 18 if Dikembe Mutombo makes the cut.

The top twenty doesn’t even include Hall of Famers Dennis Rodman, Patrick Ewing, Elgin Baylor and David Robinson.

The best big men of all-time knew how to rebound and it made them that much better players. Wilt Chamberlain and Bill Russell both averaged over 22 rebounds a game over there career and still found time to do some scoring as well.

Height helps of course, but not every basketball player that is blessed with it uses it to their advantage.  It isn’t all big men, though. The top fifty rebounders of all time is littered with small forwards. Fiftieth on the list is point guard Jason Kidd.

Simply rebounding will get you on the basketball court more. Rebound like a crazy man and you may just end up in the Hall of Fame… and be good friends with a dictator.


NBA Christmas Jerseys Reminder of a Fifth Grade Tirade

Nobody has ever confused me with the fashion police. I feel like I have style, but then I see what some members of the opposite gender are attracted to and I can’t quite figure out where I stand. Welcome to the struggles of being an introverted male in the 21st century.

Despite my fluidity in my own fashion game, I do know that the new NBA Christmas uniforms are just asking for trouble. These new uniforms have sleeves, a new fad in the NBA that I find myself being okay with, but they also have the team logo on the front of the jersey and that is it. No number.

In fifth grade, our basketball team had uniforms with a remarkably hideous logo on the front with the only inkling of a number being on the back. I, a pudgy easily-tempered fifth grader, tried to make this work to my advantage.

Before the game, our coach got on us rascals after we found ourselves complaining to the referees the game before. “The next person to complain with a ref will be sitting right next to me,” coach said.

Just moments into the game, I hack some kid going up for a shot. The refree is trying to see my number, so I keep spinning around and around and around so the ref can’t see my number. This goes on for a lot longer than it probably should have until the ref asks, “What’s your number, son?”

I turn my back to the ref and with as much attitude as I could give I throw my arms over my shoulders and point to a huge with 2-6 on my back. Then I started walking towards the bench, there’s no way I wasn’t being benched after that theatric performance.

Our bench was on a stage on this court, so everyone could see the picture. From left to right, it went me, 10 chairs, a handful of reserves and my uncle. Did I mention my uncle was our coach?

The first guy to go complain to the refs after being told not to was the coach’s own nephew. I listened real well back then.

Thankfully, my anger issues have subsided and I no longer can scream at refs while being on the playing surface, but I will never be able to look at these huge logoed jerseys and not think about what happened when a bunch of fifth graders wore the same thing.