A formalized version of three-on-three half court basketball created by FIBA in 2007, and currently being heavily promoted by the federation. Originally known as FIBA 33.
A minimum of 5 in all positive stat categories (points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocks).
A way of expressing the number of times a team that trails its opponent late in a game must secure possession of the ball and score without allowing their opponent to do the same in order to tie and/or overtake the opponent. Under normal circumstances, the most points possible on any given possession is three; therefore, the number of possessions (n) necessary is equal to the point margin divided by three and (if necessary) rounded up to the nearest integer. For instance, a team down by 7 points would be in a three-possession game.
The top professional league in Spain; often regarded as the second-strongest domestic league in the world, behind the NBA. Initialism for the SpanishAsociación de Clubes de Baloncesto ("Association of Basketball Clubs").
A step in which the defender's lead foot steps toward their man and the back foot slides forward.
An offensive play in which a player throws the ball up near the basket to a teammate (or, more rarely, to himself) who jumps, catches the ball in mid air and immediately scores a basket, usually with a slam dunk.
The free throw awarded to a shooter who is fouled while scoring.
The rectangular platform behind the rim that supports it
The half of the court a team is defending. The opposite of the frontcourt.
A team's guards.
Touching the ball in the backcourt after it has entered the frontcourt and was not last touched by the other team.
Failure to bring the ball from the backcourt into the frontcourt within the allotted time of 8 seconds in the NBA or FIBA (previously 10) and 10 seconds in NCAA play for both men and women (this violation was not part of the NCAA women's game until the 2013-14 season).
An offensive play in which a player comes from the low post to set a screen for a player on the perimeter.
A sudden movement by the player with the ball intended to cause the defender to move in one direction, allowing the passer to pass in another direction. Also called "pass fake."
Passing of the ball from one side of the court to the other.
An offensive play in which a player sets a screen on the defender guarding the player with the ball.
The half of the court (divided lengthwise) that the ball is on. Also called the "strong side." The opposite of the help side.
A wide, curving cut, as opposed to a cut that is a straight line. Also known as a 'C' cut
A shot that hits the backboard before hitting the rim or going through the net.
Passing the basketball using an overhand throw with one hand similar to a baseball pitch.
The line that marks the playing boundary at either end of the court. Also called the "end line."
baseline out-of-bounds play
The play used to return the ball to the court from outside the baseline along the opponent's basket.
A cut toward the basket.
Balance, Eyes, Elbow, Follow Through — A mnemonic used to teach proper shooting form.
Substitutes sitting on the sideline
The bench or chairs they sit on
A player who sits on the bench for most if not all of the game.
A low post player who is typically physically large for a basketball player and generally either a center or power forward.
A screen set directly behind a defender where the player can't see it.
A violation in which a defender steps in front of a dribbler but is still moving when they collide. Also called a "blocking foul."
To tip or deflect a shooter's shot, altering its flight so the shot misses.
The small painted square on the floor next to the basket just outside the lane.
To maintain better rebounding position than an opposing player by widening your stance and arms and using your body as a barrier. Also called "box out."
under NCAA and NFHS rules, a team is "in the bonus" when its opponent has seven, eight or nine team fouls in a half and so gains a one and one opportunity on each non-shooting foul. The opposing team is "over the limit." See also double bonus and penalty.
A pass that bounces once before reaching the receiver.
A combination defense in which four defenders play zone in a box formation and the fifth defender guards one player man-to-man.
See block out.
A formation in which four players align themselves as the four corners of a box. Often used for baseline out-of-bounds plays.
A shot attempt that hits the rim and bounces off.
One who repeatedly shoots bricks.
bump the cutter
To step in the way of a player who is trying to cut to the ball for a pass.
A basket in the final seconds of a game (right before the buzzer sounds) that in itself results in a win or overtime.
A penalty in formal play or slang for when an offensive player is deemed to have held the ball excessively at the ball's apex while dribbling. Also referred to as palming. In formal play this penalty is considered either a carry or a double dribble.
The ball is passed from the chest.
An offensive foul when the person with the ball rushes into a non-moving defender. See also offensive foul
One of the three standard player positions. Centers are generally the tallest players on the floor, responsible mainly for scoring, rebounding, and defense near the basket.
A player who takes frequent, and often imprudent, shot attempts. The term was popularized by the television series Seinfeld.
a rebound not credited towards either team's total rebounds, such as the rebound that (technically) occurs after a miss on the first free throw of a two-shot foul. It ensures that every missed shot has a corresponding rebound, and was introduced for the purposes of box score statistical error detection.
See drop a dime.
(FIBA) an especially egregious foul, almost always involving violence or other excessive physical contact, that is punished by immediate ejection. Equivalent to the NBA's flagrant-2.
(NCAA and NFHS) when a team accumulates 10 or more fouls in a half, the other team is "in the double bonus", earning two free throws on each subsequent non-shooting foul by the defense. See also bonus and penalty.
An offense that spreads the players to open up the lane for driving player to make a layup or kick out for a three-pointer.
To bounce the ball continuously with one hand. Required in order to take steps with the ball.
drop a dime
To make an assist without looking.
A post up move where the ballhandler picks up his dribble and at the same time extends a leg back on one side of his defender and then turns toward the basket, using that leg as leverage to get between his defender and the basket.
A fadeaway or fall-away in basketball is a jump shot taken while jumping backwards, away from the basket but still facing it. The goal is to create space between the shooter and the defender, making the shot much harder to block.
An offensive tactic in which a team attempts to advance the ball and score as quickly as possible, giving the other team no time to defend effectively. Often the result of a steal or blocked shot. See also secondary break.
An unsportsmanlike foul in which there is no serious attempt to play the ball. The NBA classifies these types of fouls as flagrant-1 and flagrant-2; NFHS (high school) uses flagrant personal foul and flagrant technical foul; the NCAA uses both sets of terms interchangeably. At all North American levels, the latter type of foul results in the immediate ejection of the offender. FIBA does not use the term "flagrant foul", instead using unsportsmanlike foul and disqualifying foul (which roughly correspond to the two North American subcategories).
A type of shot typically utilized by smaller guards. It is characterized by shooting the ball with an extremely high arc in order to prevent taller defenders from blocking the shot.
An intentional fall by a player after little or no physical contact from an opponent, with the goal of drawing a personal foul call against the opponent.
One of the three standard player positions. Forwards are primarily responsible for scoring and rebounding. See Small forward and Power forward. An individual capable of playing both types of forward is often called a cornerman or stretch four.
Violations of the rules other than floor violations, generally attempts to gain advantage by physical contact; penalized by a change in possession or free-throw opportunities; see personal foul,technical foul,flagrant foul, unsportsmanlike foul, and disqualifying foul.
An unopposed attempt to score a basket, worth one point, from the free throw line. Generally, two attempts are awarded when the player is fouled in the act of shooting (three attempts are awarded in the case of three-point shot), fouled flagrantly, or when the opposing team fouls while over the foul limit. For technical fouls, one free throw is awarded under FIBA rules, and two under North American rulesets (NBA, NCAA, NFHS). In 3x3, where regular baskets are worth 1 point and shots from behind the arc worth 2 points, one attempt is normally awarded. Two attempts are awarded when a player is fouled on a missed shot from behind the arc, the opposing team has committed more than six fouls in a game, and on any technical foul.
An underhand shot taken using both hands, usually as a free throw.
A combined offensive and defensive system created by Dave Arseneault, head coach at Grinnell College. A variation of the run-and-gun style, its most unique feature is that entire five-player units are usually substituted every 45 to 90 seconds, as in an ice hockey shift.
One of the three standard player positions. Today, guards are typically classified in two broad categories. Point guards have strong ballhandling and passing skills and are typically used to run the offense. Shooting guards, as the name implies, are generally the team's best shooters, and are very often the leading scorers on their teams. Some players, often referred to as combo guards, combine the features of both.
Someone who shoots the ball too many times.
To retreat back across the halfcourt line after either a made or missed shot attempt. Usually called out by players or coaches to let team know to hustle back and set up on defense.
The portion of a team's defensive play conducted with both teams having established positions. See also transition defense.
The portion of a team's offensive play conducted with both teams having established positions. See also transition offense.
The National Invitation Tournament, a postseason tournament for NCAA Division I men's basketball teams that do not qualify for the NCAA Tournament. Founded in 1938, a year before the NCAA Tournament, it is closely identified with New York City; all games were originally held at the third Madison Square Garden, and to this day the semifinals and final are held at today's Madison Square Garden. In its early years, it was considered more prestigious than the NCAA Tournament, but this changed starting in the 1950s. The tournament has been directly operated by the NCAA since 2006.
A foul committed by a member of the team playing offense.
(NCAA and NFHS) A free-throw attempt which, if made, allows the player a second free-throw attempt. See also bonus.
A box score showing one minute played and zero for all other statistics, resulting in a one followed by twelve zeros – the conventional American rendering of "one trillion."
A pass thrown by a rebounder to start a fast break.
See backcourt violation (1).
over the back
a foul committed by a player who tries to rebound the ball by pushing, moving or climbing on a player's back who is already in position to rebound the ball.
when the score is tied at the end of regulation play, the teams play a five-minute overtime period.
To roughly hit down a ball that an opposing player has just released for a shot. (See also, swat.)
A man-to-man defensive system in which one player pressures the ball and the other four "pack" down within an imaginary "line" extending to about 2 feet (60 cm) inside the three-point arc, with the intent of preventing dribble penetration. The system, derived from a number of other man-to-man systems, was developed by Dick Bennett, and has been popularized in the 21st century by coaches including his son Tony, Chris Mack, and Sean Miller.
Specifically referring to the habit of an offensive player to hold the ball at the apex of its bounce while dribbling, usually by gripping the ball firmly in the dribbling hand. In organized play this is always considered a dribbling penalty, often called a carry or double dribble. In non-organized play this is typically considered rude and is generally discouraged by the defensive players.
(v) To throw the ball to a teammate. (n) The act of passing.
once a team reaches a set number of team fouls in a playing period, varying by governing body, the fouled team gets free throws instead of possession of the ball. The fouling team is "over the limit." See also bonus and double bonus.
the area outside the key but well inside the three-point arc.
The pivot center.
The foot that must remain touching the floor to avoid traveling
an offensive basketball strategy which emphasizes constant motion, passing, back-door cuts, picks on and off the ball, and disciplined teamwork. Used and perfected at Princeton University, it's an offense designed for a unit of 5 players who can each pass, shoot and dribble at an above average level.
Double-digit figures in four positive statistical categories (example: 13 points, 15 rebounds, 11 assists, 14 steals)
(v) To obtain the ball after a missed field goal attempt (n) An act of rebounding.
To have one's shot blocked.
a toss in which the ball hits the rim of the basket 
rip a C
A motion used while chinning the ball to create space during a pivot between an offensive player and a defensive player. Pivot towards the defender and rips the ball in a C-shape away from the pressure to create a passing lane.
An interval in which one team heavily outscores the other.
A combined offensive and defensive system devoted to increasing the pace of the game. On offense, the ball is moved upcourt as fast as possible, with the goal of taking the first shot available (often a three-pointer). The defense uses full-court pressure in an attempt to cause turnovers. See also Grinnell System.
(v) To attempt to prevent a defender from guarding a teammate by standing in the defender's way. The screening player must remain stationary; a moving screen is an offensive foul. (n) The tactic of setting a screen. Also called a "pick".
An offensive phase after a fast break is initially stopped, but before the opponent can enter into its set defense.
A timer designed to increase the pace (and subsequently, the score) by requiring a shot to be released before the timer expires; if the ball does not touch the rim or enter the basket, it results in a loss of possession for the shooting team. The time limit is 24 seconds in the NBA, WNBA, and FIBA play; 30 in NCAA women's play; and 35 in NCAA men's play. See also airball.
A foul assessed for unsportsmanlike non-contact behavior and for some procedural violations (for example, having too many players on the floor or calling timeout when none remains). Penalized by loss of possession after a free throw which may be taken by any member of the opposing team. Frequently abbreviated as "technical" or "T."
A shot, worth three points, attempted with both feet behind the three-point line.
A three-point field goal
A three-point field goal
A play in which a shooter is fouled while making a two-point shot and then makes the resulting free throw. See also and one.
(rarely) When a shooter is fouled while taking but missing a three-point shot and then makes all three free throws.
When the ball hits the rim on a certain angle and then circles around it, can go in or out.
The portion of a team's defensive play conducted when the other team has first gained possession and is moving up the court, before both teams have established positions. Includes defense against fast breaks. See also halfcourt defense.
The portion of a team's offensive play conducted when first obtaining possession from the other team and moving up the court, before both teams have established positions. Includes fast breaks. See also halfcourt offense.
Double-digit figures in three positive statistical categories (example: 12 points, 14 rebounds, 10 assists)
true road game
Term used in U.S. college basketball to refer to games played by a particular team on an opponent's home court, or sometimes a larger venue in that opponent's home region. This distinction has been drawn in the 21st century because of an increasing number of early-season events—both individual games and tournaments—at neutral sites.
The organization that operated the Euroleague and Eurocup before handing responsibility to the Euroleague Basketball Company. It is a cooperative organization of European professional basketball leagues; the name is a French acronym for "Union of European Leagues of Basketball".
(FIBA) an egregious foul, involving excessive physical contact, fouling with no intention to make a play on the ball, or fouling an opponent on a breakaway from behind. Roughly equivalent to the NBA's flagrant-1.
Up and down
A travelling violation when the ball carrier jumps vertically into the air and does not get rid of it before landing.
An infraction of the rules other than a foul, such as traveling or a three-second violation.
A move where a player moves to the player defending him/her, then quickly turn and receive the ball. Used to fake the defender.
The Women's National Invitation Tournament, a postseason tournament founded in 1998 for NCAA Division I women's basketball teams that do not qualify for the NCAA Tournament. In its first year of operation, it was known as the National Women's Invitational Tournament, inheriting the name of a similar event that operated from 1969 to 1996. Despite the name, it has no relation to the men's NIT—it is not operated by the NCAA, and was never under the control of any of the bodies that ran the men's NIT before 2006.
when someone has shot a three-pointer that they are sure will go in the hoop.
A defense in which each player is responsible for a section of the court. See also man-to-man defense.
^Ryan, Shane (April 4, 2013). "The Cardinal Rules". Grantland.com. Retrieved 2013-04-08. The point is that every missed shot has to have a rebound. And to be able to balance the box score, there needs to be a rebound for every miss. That way you know the box score adds up. It's kind of like a geometry proof, where the left side has to equal the right side.