Basketball Quotes

There are thousands of quotes on basketball, since it is such a popular sport. Let's have a look at some which are funny, inspirational, and by famous players.
Quotabulary Staff
Last Updated: Sep 7, 2018
playing basketball
The legendary Michael Jordan once said, "Just play. Have fun. Enjoy the game." Unfortunately, winning or losing plays an important part too, with the way most sports are commercialized today. And to win, you need more than just skill.
Basketball sport
Though the game predominantly relies upon strength, speed, and skill, these attributes can only get you so far in a game of basketball. In addition, qualities like confidence and motivation can go a long way in helping you get that all-important win.
For players, an inspiring talk laced with famous quotes can be the all-important ingredient needed to gain victory. For coaches, what better way to motivate a team than to remind them what the legends of the game had to say.
So, it doesn't matter if you are a player or a coach, there is something about these quotes that can give you that extra push, that extra help, that is needed when you have tapped your reserve of talent dry.
Famous Quotes
Michael Jordan
  • You have to expect things of yourself before you can do them.
  • I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.
Basketball Player Ready for Slam Dunk
  • I never looked at the consequences of missing a big shot... when you think about the consequences you always think of a negative result.
  • Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships.
Playing Basketball
  • I play to win, whether during practice or a real game. And I will not let anything get in the way of me and my competitive enthusiasm to win.
  • Just play. Have fun. Enjoy the game.
  • I've failed over and over and over again in my life and that is why I succeed.
  • Even when I'm old and gray, I won't be able to play it, but I'll still love the game.
Larry Bird
Athlete holding trophy cup
  • A winner is someone who recognizes his God-given talents, works his tail off to develop them into skills, and uses these skills to accomplish his goals.
  • Once you are labeled 'the best' you want to stay up there, and you can't do it by loafing around. If I don't keep changing. I'm history.
  • Push yourself again and again. Don't give an inch until the final buzzer sounds.
Beautiful woman in sportswear playing basketball
  • It doesn't matter who scores the points, it's who can get the ball to the scorer.
  • I always know what's happening on the court. I see a situation occur, and I respond.
  • First master the fundamentals.
Skills word
  • Leadership is getting players to believe in you. If you tell a teammate you're ready to play as tough as you're able to, you'd better go out there and do it. Players will see right through a phony....
......And they can tell when you're not giving it all you've got. Leadership is diving for a loose ball, getting the crowd involved, getting other players involved. It's being able to take it as well as dish it out. That's the only way you're going to get respect from the players.
Magic Johnson
Successful basketball team
  • I never think that there's something I can't do, whether it's beating my opponent one on one or practicing another hour because something about my game is just not right.
Portrait of young man street basket player
  • If you're a competitive person, that stays with you. You don't stop. You always look over your shoulder.
  • Everybody on a championship team doesn't get publicity, but everyone can say he's a champion.
  • You're the only one who can make the difference. Whatever your dream is, go for it.
  • Ask not what your teammates can do for you. Ask what you can do for your teammates.
  • They said playing basketball would kill me. Well, not playing basketball was killing me.
Inspirational Quotes
Basketball Player About To Slam Dunk
Be strong in body, clean in mind, lofty in ideals.
―James Naismith

One man can be a crucial ingredient on a team, but one man cannot make a team.
―Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
Afro american male basketball player with a ball
Basketball is like photography, if you don't focus, all you have is the negative.
―Dan Frisby

Sometimes a player's greatest challenge is coming to grips with his role on the team.
―Scottie Pippen
Coach Of Female High School Basketball Team Gives Team Talk
They say that nobody is perfect. Then they tell you practice makes perfect. I wish they'd make up their minds.
―Wilt Chamberlain

Everybody pulls for David, nobody roots for Goliath.
―Wilt Chamberlain
Photograph of basketball game as a slam dunk is scored
There are really only two plays: Romeo and Juliet, and put the darn ball in the basket.
―Abe Lemons

As far as carrying the torch for the years to come, I don't know. I just want to be the best basketball player I can be.
―Kobe Bryant
Funny Quotes
This is the second most exciting indoor sport, and the other one shouldn't have spectators.
―Dick Vertleib

We have a great bunch of outside shooters. Unfortunately, all our games are played indoors.
―Weldon Drew

I'm tired of hearing about money, money, money, money, money. I just want to play the game, drink Pepsi, wear Reebok.
―Shaquille O'Neal
No matter what the occasion, you'll surely find a quote here to suit your need and situation. Hopefully they provide a shot in the arm, when you need it the most.