An NBA Playoffs commercial touting “playoff mode” includes the line “from suburbia to Serbia, it’s unbelievable” alongside this image of suburban basketball:
What stands out in this depiction of suburbia? A few things:
- Outdoor basketball with palm trees on a beautiful day of sunshine. Is this southern California? I assume this is a good spot to play basketball outdoors for most of the year. Not all places in the United States can claim this.
- This is a hoop in the driveway of a single-family home. The two players are not at the park playing basketball; they are playing in a private setting (though the street is presumably just out of view).
- How many players can dunk on the hoop set up in their driveway? It is hard to tell from the angle of the shot – the camera is just a foot or two off the ground – whether the hoop is at ten feet.
It does look like fun is being had with two guys playing hoops in the American suburbs…or a studio backlot made to look like one. While the line in the commercial tries to drive home the appeal of playoff basketball in two places with alliterative names, are the driveways of the American suburbs one of the key sites for basketball?