Shooting sleeveWhat it is: A form-fitting sleeve, typically made from a synthetic blend of nylon and spandex, that's worn over the forearm and bicep or your shooting arm.

What it's supposed to do: Keep the shooting arm warm, prevent muscles from cramping or overstretching, and help you maintain proper shooting form.

What it actually does: Looks cool. Makes your arm sweaty.

What it says about you: The shooting sleeve was first popularized by Allen Iverson and has been worn by other fan-favorites such as Dwyane Wade and Carmelo Anthony. Yes, those guys are All-Stars, but don't be fooled; this is not a performance-enhancing device. NBA players may claim that the sleeve provides some kind of superficial assistance to their play, but we all know it's more of a fashion statement than anything else, like cornrows, tattoos, and Kobe Bryant's Peter Pan-style tights.

If you currenty wear or have worn a shooting sleeve, you're probably the kind of person who wants to artificially improve your performance without actually practicing. Furthermore, you want other players to know, simply by seeing your pimped-out appearance, that you are a serious baller. This is just a guess, but you probably also pay way too much for shoes (I'm talking easily $100+ per pair), wear throwback jerseys to your pickup league, and maybe even own an official pair of NBA socks (making sure the logo is prominently displayed during games). In short, you take pickup basketball, and yourself, a little -- scratch that, a lot -- too seriously.

Cost and availability: $14.99 (plus S&H) at the NBA online store.

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36 Comments:
Anonymous Anonymous said...
I always though the league made Iverson wear his because he had a big tattoo running the length of his arm that said DEATH TO LARRY BROWN with a drawing of Larry getting run over by a bus.

Anonymous Josh said...
That's the dumbest looking basketball I've ever seen.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
On the subject of kobes tights, its just like a compression short for your whole leg, and compression shorts have been shown to reduce injuries and improve performance so they aren't useless. Although i agree he does look like a fairy.

Anonymous jeet said...
the NBA has banned kobe's tights though

Blogger Basketbawful said...
anonymous #1 -- Actually, it was a tattoo of a naked Larry Brown, which I'm sure you'll agree is far more offensive.

josh -- That basketball is what we call co-marketing. But yeah, it looks like Jason Kidd forced it out of his ass.

anonymous #2 -- A tutu might embue me with superhuman strength, but I will not wear one.

jeet -- They did, but not soon enough...

Anonymous Josh said...
Atleast we'll have an explanation for the way he shoots his free throws...;)

Anonymous caseta said...
Actually, the first athlete i've seen wearing an arm sleeve was Martina Hingis (the tennis player). I understood it kept her arm warm and I think she also had an injury on that arm and the sleeve helped her reduce the risk on reinjuring that arm.

Or maybe she just had a tattoo saying "Death to Venus Williams" and she had to cover that :P

Anonymous Boots said...
The arm sleeve is usefull in limiting scratches and cuts you normally get when you play in a league were people hack and grab.

Blogger JTExperience said...
Armsleeve = pantyhose on your arm

Pantyhose on your arm = gay.

Blogger Basketbawful said...
JTE -- Mind if I edit my post to include that?

Blogger Basketbawful said...
caseta -- Hmm. Learning that the sleeve might have originated on a female tennis player doesn't make me feel any better about wearing it to my league. (And I'm guessing your theory is right, although I'd prefer to imagine it was a tattoo of her making out with Venus.)

boots -- You're absolutely right. Why don't pickup players ever cut their damn nails? Seriously. Is there some connection between playing pickup ball and a lack of personal hygiene??

Anonymous Boots said...
I never understood why people don't cut their nails. Deflected passes or getting your nail caught on someones shirt can tear you nail right off, not to mention the fact that your scratching everyone else. It's usually big guys too swinging wildly at guards going through the lane. Or it could just be me just venting from getting wacked everytime I go to the lane.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
since the sleeve is worn by great shooters and athletes like ai wearing one is saying that your nasty at shooting, however if u cant shoot u cant wear the sleeve. i play pick up but i also play for hs so i wear it. also i hate it when guys dont cut their nails even in hs.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Sorry. You have it all wrong. These sleeves are actually worn after an injury to the arm. It is not all fashion. My doctor made me wear one while playing after an arm injury. The compression causes heat which prevents the injury from coming back. Why do you think pros wear compression shirts, compression shorts, leg sleeves, and other compression products? To prevent injury! An arm sleeve does the same thing. I ordered my from Custom Sports Sleeves. Check them out if you are interested. Their website is www.customsportssleeves.com.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
I wear a similar sleeve but it is because I had lymph nodes taken out due to cancer. The sleeve is actually a compression garment, similar to what diabetics wear on their legs. It helps with circulation and aids in lymph fluid drainage.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
They are worn to make shooting fouls more obvious, bright colors show contrast. Fashion statement as well

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Iverson had a tattoo of the grim reaper and the NBA didnt approve of that so he had to cover it up, when he first started wearin it it wasnt that long, then he got the grim reaper changed to a panther cuz the tail was the sceth, but it is used for compression and fashion, jus like the tights, i swear every team has at least 1 or more players wearin one now...
example:

Boston: Ray Allen, Glen Davis (did)
Denver: Carmelo, Jr Smith, Ranoldo Balkman
Detroit:Iverson and Rip Hamilton
Miami: Wade, Beasley
Cleveland: Lebron (did), Danny Gibson
Indiana: Danny Granger, Roy Hibbert
OKC: Jeff Green, Durant (did)
New Orleans: CP3
etc.
ps if you dont think it is a fashion how many All-Stars had it on in the 09 all-star game?
LeBron, Iverson,Cp3, Amare, Ray Allen, Danny Granger, Dwight Howard, DWade.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
they actually do help by supporting your arm... it helped me get the ball to greater distances (I wear one, and I practice daily)

Anonymous Anonymous said...
actually allen iverson has a black panthers tatoo on his arm not a larry brown tatoo

Anonymous Anonymous said...
I always thought shooting sleeves were just for flashy looks, but after I strained a ligament in my elbow during AAU after my sophomore year, I was recommended to try one. The sleeve helps restrain unwanted movement in my elbow when dribbling and shooting preventing the pain from building up. Also, it keeps sweat from running down my arm into my hand. Definately give it a try, some people don't like them but it definitely worked for me.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
shooting sleeves are mainly for compression of the arm and as many people say, good looks. they also cover up nasty tattoos and scars, so instead of a long sleeve, you have a "shooting" sleeve.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
im gunna go ahead and say shooting sleeves arnt worthless you are!!!!

Anonymous Cliff said...
it really pisses me off that they would say its for non serious athletes and people who wear them only wear them to try and improve their game without practicing. I play hs bball and start on my team. I just committed to the number 1 d3 team in the nation(randolph macon) and i wear a sleeve. i play on weekends and ive come off an acl surgery and a stress fracture injury.. so does that mean that i dont practice and i just wear one to improve my game?? BS!

Blogger TCaL473 said...
It makes me lose what little respect I used to have for the game, due to the fact the only thing that those arm sleeves and leg sleeves does is makes these copy cat pros try and create a fashion image for endorsements and recognition to cover up their true inabilities to really play the game skillfully. Most of all they all look like a bunch of Sallys!!!...aka.- Fairys!!!. It does not look cool or masculine, so "word- up" to the players that don't bite like that and dress normally. Head bands and wrist bands are NORMAL!!!!, these are for true basketball purposses only.

Blogger TCaL473 said...
It disgusts me to continue to watch this game because its never about the sport itself. It is always about money to the individuals. Twenty five million plus for players based on contracts. So lets get to the POINT HERE!!, the arm sleeves and leg sleeves have to go they DO NOT MAKE YOU LOOK COOL, they make you guys look like a bunch of SALLYS' AKA.- FAIRYS. I am too intellectual to not see the truth behind those corny sleeves. The players only wear them to gain attention and endorsements from the manufacturers and to distract attention away from their actual skills and abilities. The wearing of headbands and wristbands have always been a part or the game and are normal and cool.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
I wear a sleeve and its the Nike pro combat sleeve. I just recovered from micro surgery on my shooting arms elbow and this definatly protects my injury from getting worse and also they support your arm so you can shoot with proper form. I was Mr basketball 3a in the state of Utah and am currently attending USU on a basketball scholarship and I wore a sleeve all through my h.s. playing days and trust me they help so all you haters go find something else to hate because you all just look like fools they help with preventing and making injuries worse trust me!

Anonymous Anonymous said...
yea too bad kobe makes about 75k a day while uyou idiots are sitting online making fun of something he wears on his arm.hes a champion and you are a loser

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Can girls where shooting shirts even if they dont have muscles

Anonymous Anonymous said...
U guys r all stupid Allen iverson had a black panther on his fore arm which is y the NBA made him were the sleeve the other tattoo is a skull with a army helmet on it because his uncle died in the war

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Shooter sleeve does a lot of things.

-Cover up obscene tattoos
-Warmth
-Compression (Circulation; help heal from injuries faster)
-Helps your elbow stay straight so it helps your form a bit
-Stylish
-Covers cuts; helps prevent cuts

Anonymous Anonymous said...
WHO CARES WHAT THEY ARE WEARING!!!! The question is can they hoop? @coopdeville23 #ballin

Anonymous Anonymous said...
TRUUUUU!

Anonymous Anonymous said...
I play ball and acquired tendonitis, bursitis or tennis elbow. My kid started playing ball and did some heavy dribbling yesterday with both hands. He grasped his elbow and claims a kid bumped him. He's got the tendonitis also.

Went to sports aurhority and tried on the shooting sleeve and the mcDavid elbow sleeve. McDavid worked better for him and provides the support he needs.

Now when he dribbles the strain will be distributed throughout his arm and not just the tendon in the forearm, due to his wearing the mcDavid sleeve.

Its not just for fashion. Serious players use it to help heal injury and prevent further injury.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Am I the only one that wears it simply for the fact that it feels good on my arm? I don't understand why people hate shooting sleeves. That's like saying you are a tryhard if you wear a headband, completly disregarding the fact that that person may just be constantly getting sweat in their eyes.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
I swear to god this things help my shooting form. They keep my elbow straight and help my release point stay consistent.

IDGAF that they look nerdy as hell.

Blogger Chance Reid said...
THE COMMENTS ABOUT HOW A.I HAS TATTOO OF LARRY BROWN BEING HIT BY A BUS, OR HIM having of larry brown naked is so retarded and should be ashamed a admin would make such a comment clearly not knowing en thing about a.i lol ITS NOT EITHER OF THOSE DUMBASS'S!! GROW UP AND actually look at pics or actually meet the man ull c what it is. gang related tats. quit making a legend look bad !

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