If you spend your days checking NBA starting lineups, preparing your fantasy team, and arguing with your friends over who’s going to win the next big match-up, you’re probably more than a little obsessed with basketball. And who can blame you? But there are many other sports out there that could excite and intrigue you just as much as the world’s 7th favorite sport, including all of the following Sports Similar to Basketball.
Netball- Sports Similar to Basketball
Netball is very similar to basketball and actually evolved from the game. It is played on a rectangular court with nets at both ends.
The main difference is that netball doesn’t have boards behind the nets, making it a little harder to score. It’s also a little slower than basketball. Players can move around when they don’t have possession, but as soon as the ball is passed to them, they must stand still, after which they have three seconds to pass or shoot.
Netball was first played in England in the late 19th-century and is still played at an amateur and professional level throughout the Commonwealth.
There are over half a million registered netball players around the world and while it has not yet featured at the Olympics, it is part of the Commonwealth Games and has also been recognized as an official sport by the Olympic Committee.
Handball- Sports Similar to Basketball
Handball is massively popular in parts of Northern Europe and it has also featured as an Olympic Sport for a number of years. The ball is much smaller than a basketball and the purpose is not to sink a basket but to score in a net similar to a hockey goal.
Basketball fans will feel at home with the rapid pace of the game as it’s constantly moving from one end of the court to the other.
There are two 30-minute halves and the winning team is the one that scores the most goals. To score, the players simply need to throw the ball into the net, beating the goalkeeper whose job it is to stop them.
Korfball is a Dutch game that blends netball and basketball. It is typically played by two teams of eight players and these are usually split between the sexes, with four males and four females on each team.
The game was invented way back in 1902 by a school teacher and there are currently hundreds of Korfball clubs across the Netherlands. It’s also played in dozens of other countries worldwide (including Taiwan and Belgium), although the Netherlands is where you’ll find the biggest games and events.
If you’re looking for a basketball variant that’s as fast as handball but more intense, check out SlamBall.
It’s basically a form of full-contact basketball played on trampolines. Players score points by getting the ball through the net, but the point system is a little different from basketball.
The game of SlamBall was invented back in 1999 and it is currently played at a professional level in numerous countries worldwide, including the United States, India, Australia, and China.
If you have a subscription to ESPN, you may have seen a few games of SlamBall while channel surfing. It is also shown live on a few other networks, including Cartoon Network.
SlamBall is played over 5-minute quarters and all games begin when the ball is bounced in the middle of the court. There is a 15-second shot clock and two referees.
Although the game can seem a little no-holds-barred at times, it is possible for players to commit a foul and if they make three of them, they will be ejected from the game.
If you like full-contact sports like SlamBall, you may wish to check out kabaddi. Like basketball. It’s played on a court and is contested between two teams, one on either side of the court. However, there are no nets and it functions more like a game of extreme dodgeball and wrestling combined.
The goal is to make it over to the other side of the court and “tag” members of the other team before running back. As soon as the other team member is tagged, that team can then tackle the tagger and take them out of the game.
It’s unlike anything else you have seen or played and is more like the games you play at school than a professional sport, but it’s incredibly fun to watch and play. The rules are also easy to learn, so once you’ve watched a few games, you’ll be a kabaddi expert.
Summary: Sports Similar to Basketball
There are thousands of sports played all over the world. Some of these are massive global sports played for millions of dollars. Others are relatively obscure pastimes that are only found in small towns or communities, including cheese rolling in England and sports like chess-boxing, slapping, and medieval sword fighting in Russia.
All sport is beneficial for both your mental and physical health, so if you’re looking for something else to get excited about during the off-season, check out one of the options mentioned above.