In the past I’ve done a few things regarding the fictional world of football. But now that we’re past the football season, for the most part anyways, it’s time to turn the attention to the world of basketball and look at Sports Guy’s best fictional basketball players. As a general rule of thumb, do not expect Air Bud to be on this list. Look, I can buy the Teen Wolf concept but not a dog turning around a sad sack team.
The first player on this list is cheating. I won’t lie about this at all. It’s a cheap way out of doing this but Michael Jordan in “Space Jam.” Look, he becomes a fictional version of himself at the end of the movie when he uses Looney Tune physics to stretch out his arm across the court. That is exactly when he becomes fictional, deal with it, he’s on this list. Also, how was it not an and-one with that shot? He had three Monstars literally hanging on him. And people complain about the NBA refs.
Up next is Jimmy Chitwood in “Hoosiers.” The guy is shown missing one shot the entire film and none during the games themselves. Chitwood is like a Steph Curry in the 50s with his outside shot falling from anywhere he shoots it. He’s soft spoken, sticks up for his coach and has an unwavering confidence when he simply states he’ll make the shot to win the State title. And guess what? He made the shot.
Okay, I take that back. Chitwood, according to a study of the movie, went 20-of-23 with 40 points in the montage of game moments. That’s high caliber shooting from Chitwood. In fact, Bill Simmons once did a column over the watching of Hoosiers and created a stat line for Jimmy in the title game. Simmons had Chitwood get 30 points and six rebounds. It’s entirely plausible!
We’re also going to take Jesus Shuttleworth from “He Got Game.” It’s Ray Allen pretty much playing himself if he was a fictional character, which he was in this Spike Lee joint, but he also does a strong job. Shuttleworth is hyped up as the future king of basketball and has the best jump shot in the world. You get Chitwood and Shuttleworth going at the same time? That scoreboard is going to light up like a pinball machine.
There isn’t a center yet so Neon Boudeaux from “Blue Chips” fits the spot. Neon was played by Shaquille O’Neal, so again its a basketball player playing a basketball player. Neon pretty much just does Shaq things in the movie which is fine enough for this all time fictional team. Young Shaq was a deadly force of nature that I think a lot of people have forgotten about over the years.
The next two are a combo deal because you can’t have one without the other, Billy Hoyle and Sidney Deane from “White Men Can’t Jump.” I don’t think they could hustle the four players above, but they could easily help this fictional team win a few games. Both are good shooters and can trash talk probably better than anyone else. I think either of them could easily anger an opposing player to get them out of a zone. That’s good enough for the entertainment value.
Some honorable mentions go to Lewis Scott from Celtic Pride, Butch McRae from Blue Chips, Scott Howard from Teen Wolf and Kyle Watson from Above the Rim.