The idea was simple enough. My wife wanted a place in the yard where she could send the kids to entertain themselves and stay out of her hair. When she suggested putting a basketball area in the twelve-foot-wide swath of land next to our garage, well, I ran with it. Big time.

I'm not sure what she was expecting. Hell, neither was I. But I knew I wasn't going to half-ass it, not given the chance to create a legitimately cool place for me...uh...I mean...my kids, to shoot hoops.

In our backyard, we used to just have one of those six-foot tall movable kiddie hoops, so what I chose to create was, to say the least, an upgrade. For those of you who enjoy an episode of This Old House, this should give you a fix. And for those who just like to drool over trick basketball shots, you're covered too. Enjoy. -ET

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27 Comments:
Blogger Clifton said...
The strut after nailing the over-the-corner-of-the-house shot was great.

Anonymous TransINSANO said...
Haha, good work, Evil Ted. Looks like that was a pain in the ass to construct, but well worth it. At first I thought you looked a little too proud of some of those trick shots, but then I saw why at the end. What do your neighbors think when they see you doing that for a while?

My backyard already lends itself to a small court, so I just had to put up one of those home hoops you can get at Target. The only work I really had to do on it, other than regularly cleaning up the dog shit, was trim the big tree next to it, which I named Bill Russell, because it's big, brown & green, and kept blocking my shot.

Anonymous milaz said...
Awesome! We are building our house at the moment and of course I told my wife we'll have a basketball hoop in the backyard for me... erm the future kids ... to play!

Anonymous Azreous said...
Very nice. That's a hell of a way to get the most out a limited space.

Blogger chris said...
The audio overdub action on this reminds me of one of my favorite Food Network shows, Alton Brown's "Good Eats." Good job, ET. :D

Blogger Dan B. said...
Sweet court, Evil Ted. Perfect size for the kids! The netting was a great idea -- I wish my dad and I had thought about that when we put up a hoop at our old house. It would have saved me at least 500 hours of my life spent chasing down botched passes and missed shots that went over the fence and into the back yard. Also, the temporary return net idea? Brilliant. It's like the world's best pop-a-shot!

(And damn you for making me lament not having a hoop in the driveway anymore.)

Anonymous Barry said...
Brilliant video Ted. Great idea that net return, that's the kind of lazy/forward thinking I can get behind!

@TransINSANO: That last bit got me a great laugh.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
love the site and that vid was inspiring

Anonymous D. Highmore said...
Nice work, Evil Ted. Kinda reminds me of my mini-court... For Xmas when I was 13, my parents put an in-ground hoop & backboard in our driveway. It was great, but something was missing. So one day, a couple of friends and I spent hours measuring and painting lines on the court. It looked really professional. And then my dad came home from work and made me clean them up. It was damn near impossible to get all the paint up, and even now, almost 20 years later you can still see a faint lane on there...

Blogger Evil Ted said...
Trans - The Bill Russell Tree - love it!

Nobody really cared about me on my roof tossing up shots. I created no disturbance at all...

...you may notice on the off-the-garage-roof shot that I dubbed the audio...it was getting late (and I was getting anxious) and the cicada (those annoying bugs that make noise at dusk) were in full throat.

Azreous - As a ball purist, I thought the area was too narrow (hard to visualize with the trees and crap in there)...it was my wife, surprisingly, who said it was wide enough. I was supposed to be the visual / spatial one...huh.

Barry - Well, the people who invented the product had a great idea. It comes with two weighted posts (you fill them with sand), but the area isn't wide enough to make the return work right. So I tossed the posts, and used the fence and garage, and It pulled the net far enough apart to make it work. I know, TMI. I'm just into this stuff.

Clifton - Yeah, that was the first one I made, and I was pretty pleased with myself. The rest were done in a single day a couple days later - my favorite is the extreme Larry Bird shot. Because it's extreme, and named after Larry Bird.

ET

Blogger Adam said...
Awesome video ET - Entertaining AND educational!

The ball return is a great idea too. Having to chase down my missed shots (which is just about all of them) when playing on my own is one of the more depressing things. I so rarely even just shoot around that I'm past the point of caring about missing; It's running after the ball that I hate.

Great trick shots at the end, by the way.

Anonymous JJ said...
Great job! The court looks beautiful and the trick shots were pretty impressive. By the end of the video, I was half-expecting you to make a shot out of a flying airplane...so, I was a little disappointed.

Blogger chris said...
JJ: I was half-expecting you to make a shot out of a flying airplane

that's the bonus mode in Matt McHale: Technical Writer Challenge, after one successfully performs the CHAOS DUNK.

Anonymous SirGirthNasty said...
I too am a ball purist, Ted. Unfortunately, every basketball hoop I've had has been on an incline. You miss a shot, and you're running down the hill trying to catch the ball before it hits the barbed wire fence. Good for conditioning though, even if it gets annoying. Now my house is situated at the end of a cul-de-sac. Which may seem like it's an improvement, but there's no way to situate the goal for it to sit in my yard and still be in an optimal position. So now if you MAKE a shot, it bounces off the curb and flies in some random direction. I always keep dreaming of having a full indoor-court in my backyard someday.

Anonymous AK Dave said...
The ball return made of net is cash-money.

I also love the child labor. You should be subcontracting them and keeping the profits. I mean, it's THEIR court, right? They should pay for it!

Blogger Dan B. said...
The Knicks have hired Isiah Thomas as a consultant. Oh how I love the NBA and the way they just keep spoon-feeding us comedy every year.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
I have to commend you for keeping your swagger ready after finally making that roof shot. If it was me missing all those times, not even getting close, my spirit would've been broken. I would have been shocked and stunned when the ball went in that the reaction shot would have been messed up. This tells me that you possess an irrepressible optimism.

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
chris - I think he was making a reference to this. And of course, I'm fully expecting Dude Perfect to make a Chaos Dunk trick shot at some point.

Blogger Drake said...
Evil Ted:

Were you challenging MJ and Bird to the rights to that Big Mac meal that's been slowly cooling to an inedible state because you were all too busy playing HORSE instead?

And one idea for the ball-return net to send balls to one spot: attach two sandbags with caribiners to two points in the middle of the netting (or whichever spot you like) so that it "funnels" the ball towards that spot.

Blogger Evil Ted said...
Anon - Well, any shot is makeable if you have the time and takes. My optimism? Tough to maintain as night was approaching....maybe at some point, I realized I'd find a way to use the misses too... :) Gotta have that blooper reel.

I actually made the first "off the roof" shot one time just as the batteries died in the camera. My son was off getting new batteries when I took the shot alone, and of course, it went in. Only thing worse would have been sinking a hole-in-one under the same circumstances.

I felt that looking "excited" kinda takes the juice out of it...it's practically like saying "I've been f***ing trying to make this all day." Gotta look like you belong there.

Drake - I did think of parodying that commerical with a few edits (the ball hitting various surfaces and going in), but as I managed to make each successive shot, I got married to the purity of no camera tricks.

RE: your idea - The ball kinda rolls naturally to the center with the slack in the net, but the original product showed how you can reposition the weights to make the ball return to various parts of the court. (sadly, my court is basically only the "paint" area, so doing stuff like that isn't possible - and the weights went into the garbage).

Anonymous Anonymous said...
haha...nice! i wish i had some room in my backyard to do that! Its just...that looked pretty expensive to do...lol

Anonymous Anonymous said...
This was very entertaining..haha...except for the kid wearing a Celtics jersey nonsense!

Anonymous Anonymous said...
@DanB

Hiring Isiah Thomas is a genius move in disguise. The Knicks will just ask Isiah what he would do, and then do the exact opposite.

Anonymous Ze Ray said...
Yeah, isiah has a good eye for talent. And poon. And drug dosage.
This should be good for some bawful next season.
And how stupid are those knicks starting to look again? This is the pros man! shouldn't everything be, you know, professional and all?
Relative to market size vs quality they've probably been the worst team ever over the last decade. The NBA has always been ruled by large market teams if you think about it. That's where the money is, the big city glamour, that's where the top FA's want to go. And still they're not really doing better that your average T-wolves or Bobcats or anything...

Blogger Sid said...
Ok ET, Imma let you finish, but my backyard rim was the most awesome ever.


(The garbage heap wasn't so big when I played. This pic was taken after some months of absence.)

Blogger Wormboy said...
Nice stuff, ET! That was indeed a Dude Perfect shot.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
It's great to try and build your own court! However for those of you who want a quality product and installation job should try Sport Court!

http://www.sportcourt.com

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