Slam Ball - Top Plays

The court is surrounded by plexiglass and substitutions were allowed on the fly, like in hockey. Another huge difference from traditional basketball: SlamBall is a full-contact sport. With both players on the ground, hockey-style hip-checks are legal. If you did that in the NBA, it’d be a flagrant foul. But don’t worry, players wear plenty of pads.

The league only ran for three full seasons — 2002, 2003, and a 2008 revival — all with players you hadn’t heard of before and haven’t clamored for since. Does the name Sean “Inches” Jackson ring a bell? He performed his signature 360-degree, between-the-legs dunk in games. While you might not have heard of SlamBall’s greatest players, they were athletic and made the games hella fun. Imagine giving that space to players who’ve been in the limelight and just need a little bounce.

While the SlamBall rosters weren’t filled with memorable names, the coaching ranks were. Knicks legend John Starks, Kenny Anderson, and Rocket Ismail were all head coaches in SlamBall, although they combined for one playoff appearance and no wins. Name recognition wouldn’t be an issue for the Big3.


The evolution of Big3 into trampoline basketball would be a true alternative, not the senior NBA tour. Since the Big3’s debut season in 2017, it hasn’t made a dent in the American sports scene. It’s like the Harlem Globetrotters but without much of the pageantry and tradition. Put four rectangular trampolines on the court, and it’s a whole new ball game. And I’d love every second of it.