Today’s Girls are Cool pays tribute to one of the most fundamental moves in all of basketball. And, no, I’m not talking about the lay-up even though we all know that girls can bus’ a lay-up better than anyone else. It doesn’t even have anything to do with scoring. It’s not dribbling either. Sure, dribbling’s crazy important. It’s the first thing you learn when you’re a kid. And many kids don’t even make it past that lesson. You ever see an adult who can’t dribble a basketball? It’s probably the most pathetic and sad thing. It’s like watching people attempting to rescue a dog trapped in a frozen pond. That’s what I liken it to. Dribbling is truly fundamental, but eventually, you run out of dribbles. What I’m referring to is the chest pass. It’s the chest pass that reminds us that we are not an island. We have teammates and, without the ability to pass, you’d have guys rebounding, dribbling the length of the floor, getting trapped under the rim by three defenders and then flailing like a tazed orangutan while trying to launch the rock at the rim. The chest pass gives the ball wings. It allows the ball to move to players in more advantageous position to score. It’s how you talk with teammates. Collaborate towards a common goal.
I was watching Celtics/Sixers last night (Celtics won with 1.4 seconds remaining, yep) and, watching Rondo specifically, he captures man’s migration away from the chest pass to more creative endeavors. There’s the one-arm bounce pass, the two-handed over-the-head chunk, the two-handed dominant hand in the back pass (like shooting a free throw), the weird single-handed underhand here-ya-go toss. The chest pass is lost in the league. Boys have tried to move away from the chest pass. It’s not as cool. It’s not as sexy. The second Magic started bounce passing the length of the floor with a one-armed rifle, the chest pass has found itself moving closer and closer to the exit door in the NBA. They’ve wanted to evolve passed the chest pass for decades now.
A true chest pass is when you put your hands on opposite sides of the ball and pull it inward to your chest and then thrust it forward with equal force from both hands using the tension created by both of your hands to then launch the ball outward. I remember when I was a junior higher watching the girls basketball team (often) lined up in twos all the way down the basketball court warming up for practice and they’d be just working on their chest passes. Back and forth, back and forth. While the coach would walk around like a drill sergeant with the whistle just on the edge of her lower lip. I thought it was odd that they’d sit around practicing chest passes. Maybe if you were like five years old, but junior high? That was until I saw a girl damn near chest pass a volleyball through dry wall.
Girls are cool because their chest passes are lethal and deadly accurate. I present to you Exhibit A.
This video presents a few different key learnings. First off, the chest pass also works with a football and winning scholarships from soda companies. Good for this girl. This also points out a striking moment in eternal girls vs. boys warfare where, the boy insists on tossing it like boys throw footballs. His form is fantastic, follow-thru is obviously well-practiced, but his aim is about six inches off in a short contest and he ends up one ball short of the girl who does what she knows. She doesn’t attempt to play by the boys’ rules. She goes straight to the chest pass. How daring. It’s like going to the foul line and killing it with a granny shot. She’s not ashamed. She’s a cold-blooded killer. And this isn’t like the girl push-up. She beat the boy by first out-smarting him. My lovely wife called attention to the woman’s problem solving skills in this situation suggesting that women had superior problem-solving skills. I can’t prove that, but I can say that this video is proof that women know how to get it done. Nowhere does it say you can’t chest pass it, I suppose.
And she’s $123,000 richer.
And he got served by a chest pass. Dude should’ve stayed in school.
Here’s to girls and their undeniable mastery of chest pass. Girls are cool.