Saturday, March 5, 2011

If Women Had Invented Basketball

Had women invented the game of basketball, a losing team would never feel hopeless for a comeback.

As a good fan does, I carted my three children over to a church league basketball tournament to watch my husband's team fight for victory against a team that - well, let's just say when the ball hit their hands it apparently had some magnetic force pulling it to the net...they just didn't miss a bucket!

It wasn't long and we could tell our team was in trouble. It was then that my fellow fans - wives, mothers and girlfriends - began to acknowledge the tremendous skill and agility of our players.

"We should get points for outrageous moves and wildy competitive efforts," I say.

The girls and I were all in agreement. We began compiling a mental list as the game continued.

One of our youngest players - an athletic college student from the local university powers his way down the court to attempt a layup, only to do a slider, curvy-type move thing that instead of gaining him a bucket - it resulted in the opposing player tossing him into the wall.

My motherly instinct kicked in and I couldn't help myself - I yelled, "He's on scholarship! Don't hurt the boy!!!"

And then my mind shifted. I declared to my girl posse, "He should get points for that!"

Naturally, they all agreed.

Another one of our players hopped through the lane like a rabbit when the ball was stripped from his hands in an vigilant move to the basket.

Impersonating any small rodent: easily 3 points.

The one that really got us gals fired up was a last-second shot my own husband launched from beyond the half line...and it went in!!

But the darn buzzer had already gone off so it didn't count.


Wildly exciting shots originating from the opposite side of the court that go in - regardless of timing: 10 points.

The guy with the incredible vertical jump who slaps the backboard as he attempts to block a shot: 6 points. (Let's face it - we all wish we could do it, so maybe it should even be worth more. Put it in the category of : very few people can actually do that and the fans love it: 15 points.)

And frankly, we're women. We're not just watching for hoops, we're observing the attire, too. Sometimes this type of league play means a team just picks a color and they all throw on t-shirt. The opposing team today chose blue - but every blue was a different shade. Not cool, boys. Not cool. Clashing will not earn you a single point.

Now, on the other end of the our team in identical yellow t-shirts complete with names and numbers. Let's put that at another 3 points.

And when they're clever enough to pair it with black shorts to match the lettering - this is off-the-charts good for a guy. You just earned 2 more points per player.

But we're female - and we love shoes.

So rack up some points for color-coordinated shoes: another 2 points per player.

But we're not always about matchy-matchy, either. Sometimes a schnazzy pair of shoes can turn a mediocre player into greatness, just by sheer fashion sense. So shoes that catch our eye and make us say, "oooh!": 3 points per player.

I'm simply giving points where points are due: entertainment.

After all, that's the whole reason to attend these games. When you're getting beat by 26 points, you have to look a little deeper for the entertainment value.

Had the 'new' rules been in place, it may have been a very close game that we likely would have won. (Our guys have some pretty unique moves! Did I mention the rabbit?)

But I'm optimistic. I was sitting next to the league organizer's wife, and she was completely on board with the new scoring system.

So don't fret over defeat today. Mr. League Organizer will likely have to apologize to his bride someday soon for not taking out the garbarge or leaving his socks on the floor, and she'll tell him how to make it up to her.

Then victory will never be impossible. Just remember to wear black shorts.

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