Hoops Nation: A Guide to Americas Best Pickup Basketball by Chris BallardLooking for a game? Heres your guided tour of the countrys best pickup basketball courts, from the blacktops of Brooklyn to the asphalt of Anchorage to the gyms of Jackson, Mississippi. Its all inside: where the pros play, the most scenic runs in the land, and a ranking of the top five courts. Chris Ballard and three other former college players piled into a used Chevy van and traveled thirty-one thousand miles in seven months, playing at over a thousand courts in 166 cities in forty-eight states. This is the story of their roundball road trip and a guide to the places, people, and communities they encountered. More than a travel guide, Hoops Nation is a celebration of the game of basketball as it is played in America. It includes guides to streetball fashion, the lingo of the courts, the etiquette of the pickup world, the tricks of old-guy basketball, and tips for the dunking impaired. Also included are profiles of playground legends and dispatches from the legions of basketball lifers who populate the countrys courts. This book can tell you where they’re running today, all over America. Who’s got next?
The 9 Most Iconic Basketball Courts In America
Its smaller-than-regulation size means you have to earn your keep in the paint and learn to be flexible on what constitutes a foul. Need more evidence of its legendary status? Play or watch? Comparatively, matches here are less intimidating. Come summertime, during its annual Dyckman Basketball Tournament, the park attracts a fair amount of college and even pro players.
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All photos courtesy of Kevin Couliau. For more than 30 years, French photographer Kevin Couliau has roamed the globe looking for the greatest basketball courts. His passion for the game started in his childhood and culminated in his documentary Doin' It in the Park , in which he showcased New York's most iconic local courts and retraced the history of the city's pickup basketball scene. Today, he works as a photographer and videographer on behalf of major brands, media, and the NBA. Whenever he's traveling around on assignments, he keeps an eye out—and his camera ready—for the most special places to shoot hoops. I met up with Couliau and asked him to narrow that selection down to his favorite nine photos and explain what makes them so special to him. When I got there, these kids were playing three on three, but as soon as they saw me taking pictures, they stopped and started posing.