It’s basketball time folks. Ignore Tom Brady trying to own the spotlight on Selection Sunday and decipher Progressive Insurance sales representative Baker Mayfield’s social media post later, and give the hardwood the attention it deserves. It’s almost spring, hit the CBS music, pull Ernie, Kenny, and Chuck off the Inside the NBA desk, it’s March Madness time!
To celebrate, we at Deadspin went through 104 fictional basketball characters in film, television, advertisements, and video games to construct a bracket of the greatest fictional hoopers of all time. This is a multi-generational effort with characters that spread across six different decades.
What the selection committee was looking for most was notability. Yes, basketball talent is important, but we’re matching up spirits from the beyond to video game characters and werewolves. What we wanted most are characters that you will respond to.
The best way to explain what went into the seeding matchup process would be by sharing the formula, but I lost the cocktail napkin I wrote it down on so you’ll have to trust me when I say it would make Professor Lambeau want to bail me out of an assault charge (and put me in therapy with Robin Williams).
We’ll kick it off with the Venice Beach Region, a clear tip of the cap to White Men Can’t Jump.
Just know that many of the first-round matchups are intentional, especially the doppelgängers, (Neon Boudeaux vs. Big Fella, Billy Hoyle vs. Monix). Those that aren’t, if you delve deep into the minutiae and worry about who has the correct number next to their name, you’re going to drive yourself insane, but feel free.
If you’re mad about seeding, let it out. We welcome your complaints, just be sure to do your civic responsibility and vote for your favorites on Twitter @Deadspin.
So grab your Jim Nantz quarter zips and preferred pair of basketball shorts because working from home has never been less efficient. The long journey for one fictional movie, TV, video game, animated, or on-screen basketball star to shine the brightest starts now.