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Basketball Games

Goalsetter products are American made and built to last! Here are just a few game ideas to keep you and your teammates having fun for years to come. Got any cool games of your own? Email us! We want to play too!


5-3-1 is a variation of 21. You start by attempting a shot from the free throw line. If they make it, the player earns 5 points. You must then get your own rebound from that shot, regardless of whether it goes in or not. When you get the rebound, you must stay at the spot that you grab the rebound. From there you attempt a shot and earn 3 points if you make it. Finally you get a third shot which is usually taken as a lay-up, which counts for 1 point. If you make all 3, you go again. The first person to reach exactly 21 wins. It is possible to reach 21 on your first turn. If you sink all 3 twice, you will have 18 points. The next free throw has to be missed and the ensuing 3 point shot has to be made and then the last shot has to be missed.


Champs is a variation of the game Horse. Each player is given 5 tries to make the shot he first attempted. If a shot is made within 5 tries then each player participating must either make the shot within those tries or under. If a tie occurs then a shoot off is conducted where the first shooter is chosen via rock, paper, scissors. The champ is crowned when a person starts and finishes a round.

Knock Out

Knock Out is played with at least two players, although as many players as possible is suggested. Two basketballs are used. After an order is established by forming a line at the top of the key or the free throw line, all players must attempt their first shot from this point. The first and second players in the line start with the basketballs. Play begins with Player #1's first shot; after that shot player #2 may shoot. If the first shot by a player is missed they must follow their rebound and try to make a basket from anywhere on the court. The game at this point is between player #1 and #2; if player #2 makes a shot first, player #1 is "knocked out" (eliminated from the game). If Player #1 makes a shot first, he passes the ball to player #3. The object of the game is to "knock out" the other players. Players may only touch their own ball. If player #1 shoots and then player #2 shoots, and they both make it, player #1 and player #2 are safe.

Around the World

Around the World is a game played by two or more players, who have all agreed upon a turn order. The game requires a sequence of shooting positions to be decided upon. In theory, these positions are arbitrary; in practice, they are most commonly ordered along the 3-point line in equal intervals starting from one of the sides of the basket and including the straight-on center shot (e.g., 0, 30, 60, 90, 120, 150, and 180 degrees along the 3-point line with 90 being the center). This 180 degree semi-circular path is the inspiration for the game's name. The object is to be the first player to make a shot from all positions. Making a shot from a position allows a player to advance to the next position. The rules are very flexible but usually a player keeps advancing until a missed shot. The consequences of missing a shot may vary. Sometimes the game is played such that a missed shot requires the player to start over at the first position. Under this rule, the game may also include another rule that allows a player to "save" their position, and pass the ball to the next player. It is probably most common, however, to play such that each player continues until a missed shot. At this point a player may save their position or elect to take another "chance" shot. If the chance shot is made, the player advances as normal. If it misses, the player's turn ends and they suffer some penalty, perhaps regressing a position or even starting over. Whatever the specifics of the game, when a player makes a successful shot from the final position, the game is over and he or she is declared the winner.


Forty-two is a four-player game with two players on each team. Both players shoot three-pointers from the corners, the wings and facing the basket. If someone makes the shot on a bank, it's worth 4 points and if he or she makes the shot without banking it, they get three points. The other two players are at the basket and if they tip the ball in without their feet touching the floor with the ball in their hands, they get one point. An air ball is minus one and whoever gets to 42 first without going over, that team wins. But if a team gets 42 and they shot first, the other team still has to shoot because both teams must take the same number of shots. If one team goes around the world without either player making one shot, they go back to zero.

Beat the Ghost

Beat the Ghost is a 3-point practice, single player game. The player must shoot from anywhere behind the 3 point line. If the player makes a shot he or she receives one point. If the player misses a shot, the "ghost" receives 2 points. First player to 10 wins. Obviously the object of the game is to make 10(ten) 3-pointers before you miss 5(five) 3-pointers in order to win.

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