The Alley Oop
Alley oop! The original cry of the French circus acrobat about to make a leap has been adopted by basketball players and basketball lovers from around the world as the name of a well-played trick in many basketball games. The play is known for involving strong passing and dunking skills as well as coordination between two players. Requiring skill and exciting, it is one of the moves that makes the players of the Orlando Magic some of the most entertaining players in the NBA.
The alley oop originated in the mid-1960’s in college play. The play involves a pass from one team member to another, the ball being caught in mid-air, and then a basket being made. Originally, the alley oop did not feature dunking, as dunking was illegal in college basketball games of the time. However, in modern play the basket is made by the second player dunking the ball. The play has become a quick scoring technique and even is a planned play for many players.
The Orlando Magic players use this play both as a quick strike style score and as an entertaining move that keeps players enthralled. There is nothing like the honed passing skill, dexterous catches, and thrilling dunk of two players working in tandem to make a score. This devastating play has the ability to add points to a team’s score, while still being action packed. One false move, one dropped pass, one moment of heavy interference, or a slightly misjudged dunk and this play will fail miserably. The play is additionally difficult as it requires strong communication between the passer and the person making the basket. While signals can be used, they often also tip off the defense and if the timing of the play is off, it will fail. Because of this, the play is an exciting risk that also has the benefit of being a potential strong scorer if the team works correctly together.
Is it surprising then that the alley oop is a favored play for many Orlando Magic members? With the team devoted both to pinpoint precision and team work, but also dedicated to entertaining fans, it should not surprise any basketball lover that the Orlando Magic loves this particular play. There is nothing as thrilling as watching your favorite Orlando players charge down the court, dribbling and making that moment of eye contact with a player in the key, waiting for a pass. Tension will pass between them, the spectators will hold their breath, and then in a moment of speed the ball is flung forward, caught in sure and capable hands, and lofted toward the basket. Swoosh! The ball slams through the net and the play is successfully completed as the spectators cheer in excitement. The alley oop is complete!