Kids Newsletter

NBA Basketball 101: What is an assist?


It's the most wonderful time of the year for two reasons: 1) It's the holiday season and 2) The NBA season gets started on Dec. 22.

The holiday season is also the giving season, which gives us a perfect reason to look at the most unselfish stat in basketball - the assist.

There's nothing better than seeing someone react to the perfect gift we've gotten them for the holidays. In basketball, there's nothing better than giving a teammate a great pass.

We often hear the word assist, but how do we get one?

An assist is awarded to a player when they pass the ball to a teammate and it leads to a basket. In other words, you're assisting them in scoring for the team.

Here's an example of WNBA star Kia Nurse finding one of her teammates with a beautiful assist:

While scoring is the object of the game, passing the ball can be just as rewarding. Some of the best players in the NBA and WNBA are known for their passing ability as well as their scoring ability.

Last season, LeBron James led the NBA with 10.2 assists per game while helping the Los Angeles Lakers win the 2019-20 NBA championship.

In the WNBA, the Seattle Storm led the way in team assists at 21.9 per game in the regular season and at 27.3 per game in the playoffs, which helped them win the 2020 WNBA championship.

Both LeBron and the entire Storm team benefitted from being unselfish with the basketball. So the next time you hit the court, one thing to keep in mind is that the best basketball is played when everyone gets involved.

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