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Basketball Moves

Basketball has a thing for naming everything. There are all kinds of names for basketball moves and basketball shots.

Some moves and shots that are owned by a certain players get named after them where as some one time moves and shots are so infamous that they are elevated and given their own name. Dunks have been given names such as “Le dunk de la mort” (French for “The Dunk of Death”).

This dunk was named for Vince Carter’s dunk over French center Frederic Weis, who was 7’2” tall. Carter went up and over Weis in one of the most spectacular international dunks of all time. Chocolate Thunder, Darryl Dawkins was very fond of naming his dunks in a very poetic manner.

The first time he broke a backboard he named the dunk Chocolate-Thunder-Flying, Robinzine-Crying, Teeth-Shaking, Glass-Breaking, Rump Roasting, Bun-Toasting, Wham-Bam-I-Am Jam” He toasted the player he did it on and paid tribute to the broken glass all over the floor.

Some of his other dunks were kindly named n Your Face Disgrace, The Go-rilla, Earthquaker Shaker, Candyslam, Dunk You Very Much, Look Out Below, Yo Mama, Turbo Sexophonic Delight, Rim Wrecker, Greyhound Bus (went coast-to-coast), Cover Your Head, and Spine Chiller Supreme Chocolate thunder also began naming Dwight Howard’s dunks.

He called Howard’s superman dunk, “The Supersonic Death Defying, Lead Flying, Underdog Dunk.” He called the tipping the ball against the glass with his left hand and then dunking it down with his right the “The Tap and Trap Dunk. “ and he named the head behind the backboard dunk “The Walk Away From Love Dunk.” The “Shaw-Shaq Redemption” was named after the alley oop assist from Brian Shaw to Shaquille O’Neal.

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Amare Stoudamire’s had one of his dunks dubbed the “Throwdown in Oaktown” after dunking on Anthony Tolliver of the Portland Trailblazers. Not to be out done guards have issued names to their moves also. Most of the names came out of the streetball arena and are completely illegal, but have crept into the conventional NBA. Streetball is a game filled with trash talking and showmanship.

Players with flashy nicknames and impressive skills play it on urban playground b-ball courts and in gyms. The Shirt Catch, The Tornado, the Back Breaker, the One Handed ShammGod, Hurricane, the Weird Crossover Hurricane, the Nutcracker, the Dragon Walk Rainbow, the Lethal, the Twista, the Front-Back-Dance, the Whirlwind, the See No Evil, the Ghetto Leap Frog, the Boomerang and the Shirt Trick Fake. Some names of the acceptable and legal basketball dribble moves are more self-explanatory than the streetball moves.

The hesitation dribble, crossover, the wrap, the jab, the shake-n-bake and between the legs are the standards. There are some moves that guards are so skilled at that it is distinguished as their own.

The Hardaway Crossover, The Iverson crossover, the Shanghai Shake by Yao Ming, the Jason Williams mirage crossover, and Reggie Miller breakaway and fadeaway, the Baron Davis spin and the Kobe jab step. A search of youtube will give many examples of all these dribbles legal and illegal. The young guards of today are growing up and playing more and more streetball.

The illegal moves are becoming part of the youth game and the habits are hard to break as they begin to play conventional basketball.

The travel rule in the NBA has been re-interpreted and traveling, a written in the rulebook, is done on every play. Palming or carrying is a rule that was made to prevent players from getting an unfair advantage without dribbling.

Most great dribble moves cannot be accomplished without carrying the ball. Guards like Iverson, Jordan, Hardaway and Thomas all pushed the envelope to what is acceptable and what is not.

Dribble Moves

The Spin Move

Pick And Roll

Street Moves



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