Best Pickup Basketball Game

Mission High Outdoor Courts

At some pickup games (take the Panhandle or Dolores Park, please), the style of basketball can best be described as egocentric: get the ball and shoot the ball, with a bunch of jukes, jibes, and fakes in between. Blame it on Chicago Bulls all-world superstar Michael Jordan, who glamorized the idea of the one-man scoring machine, or Boston Celtics great Kevin McHale, who was called the "Black Hole" because he never returned a ball passed to him. Some players might argue that this sticky-fingered approach is the way playground ball was meant to be; the guys waving their hands in vain under the basket might argue otherwise. Luckily, the weekend Mission High game provides a respite from trigger-happy Sir Shootalots. The emphasis is on team play; the no-look pass in heavy traffic or the nicely turned pick-and-roll is as highly prized as the shake-and-bake running one-hander. In fact, a general tendency to let fly may result in your shooting opportunities being soundly curtailed and your cries for help on defense falling on deaf ears.

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