There are so many otakus around the world who love watching anime or cartoons but finding someone who enjoys basketball and anime simultaneously is often difficult. Many people would think that watching basketball anime (or any sports anime) requires deep knowledge of the game. Although most sports lovers would appreciate it, others (even those who don’t play the sports) can still enjoy it.
If you’re an avid basketball fan or you simply enjoy watching sports anime, then this article is for you. Here, we’ll discuss and review some of the popular basketball animes to binge watch to help you get inspired or simply entertained.
Produced by Toei Animation
Status: 5 Seasons (101 episodes), completed
Slam Dunk is by far the best, if not the most epic and legendary basketball anime ever. And I bet everyone would agree. This classic anime tells the story of a high school boy named
Hanamichi Sakuragi, who decides to join the school’s basketball team in order to get the attention of Haruko Akagi, the sister of the basketball team’s captain. As Hanamichi learns to play this sport, he falls in love with it and works harder than anyone else to become a better player and help his team get to the nationals.
Slam Dunk is packed with humour, drama and a lot of basketball action that anyone can enjoy. Seriously, it even teaches you most of the rules in basketball so beginner basketball players can learn a lot from it. The games are so thrilling they’ll make you jump in your couch or wherever you are watching this anime. The story is really touching, the characters are well-developed and the whole show conveys the passion for this sport and the spirit of team play. Slam Dunk is a surprisingly inspiring show and a must-watch for basketball and anime fans alike.
Kuroko no Basket (Kuroko’s Basketball)
Produced by Production I.G
Status: 3 Seasons (75 episodes), completed
If you’re looking for a modern basketball anime masterpiece, try watching Kuroko no Basket. It’s the story of Kuroko Tetsuya, who was the sixth man of the legendary middle school team of superstars known as the Generation of Miracles. Kuroko has now joined Seirin High and, together with the rising star Kagami Taiga, they attempt to defeat the rest of the members of the Generation of Miracles and their respective teams, one by one.
The series is available on Netflix, which is mainly why the series has re-spiked in popularity. Kuroko no Basket has an intriguing story, awesome characters and of course, all the non-stop action most basketball fans would expect. Simply put, it’s the modern Slam Dunk with more animations and basketball actions. That’s exactly why Kuroko no Basket is superior to other basketball animes.
Ahiru no Sora
Status: 50 episodes, ongoing
Ahiru no Sora revolves around the story of Sora Kurumatani. He makes up for his shorty height with his hard work and passion for basketball. And he didn’t fail. Eventually, he got a slot in a high school ball club, and earns the respect of fellow basketball players even if he stands at just 4’11.
The manga was first released in 2004 and has enjoyed a warm welcome from the manga community. It has been a favorite in the Weekly Shonen Magazine for over 15 years.
This anime screams “Slam Dunk” 2.0 and one of the characters is a more serious (maybe less funny) version of Sakuragi. But it borrows elements from “Dear Boys” as well. Sora has shades of Aikawa and there’s the close relationship between the boys’ and girls’ teams. Yet even as it pays homage to other classic basketball animes, the show gives a modern twist to the sub-genre of hoops anime.
Status: 1 season (26 episodes)
Dear Boys, also known as Hoop Days in the anime, is such a fun and cool hoop series. The anime only lasting for just 26 episodes which all aired in 2003. This is perfect for those who enjoys short anime series.
It tells the story of Aikawa Kazuhiko, a star player and former captain of the prestigious Tendoji High basketball team. He transferred to the town school of Mizuho, where he formed a basketball team from scratch. His goal is to inspire other players to join him in his ambitious goal of playing the national tournament.
Dear Boys presents the most competitive and passionate basketball players playing with their hearts in the most thrilling and dramatic basketball games. If you’re really into basketball or team sports in general, then this anime is a must-watch for you.
Why we recommend the above-mentioned basketball anime
We are not recommending these basketball animes for no reason. The above-mentioned animes are all quality shows in the basketball-related stories and there are several aspects that make them the top basketball anime choice of many otakus and basketball fans.
Animation or Graphics
Animes have grown a lot in the quality through time. The graphics introduced in the pre-2000 era are all rough and realistic while the modern ones are more animated and detailed.
The animation is definitely one of the primary reasons to watch any Japanese tv series. Now give these basketball animes a try, download them or find some of them on Netflix if youare looking for good entertainment anime series with equally good graphics.
Basketball animes are loved by almost all basketball fans and even other sports. You will see players playing the game while teaching some valuable lessons to live a good life.
A true basketball fan will never miss the opportunity to add such a mode of sports anime entertainment. These shows offer an equally better chance for the other viewers to get a better understanding of the basketball rules.
Funny and Weird
As we discussed above, the posters, trailers, and descriptions might show basketball-related stuff but there are many other things on offer too. There are episodes where ball players were learning various basketball tricks while picking on to each other. And of course, the hilarious Japanese anime reactions that will make you laugh. These moments are among many other reasons why many people watch basketball anime.
Japanese shows are best known for producing a variety of entertainment from drama to romance and humour at the most appropriate time. Not only these basketball animes will make you laugh or cry but they can also teach you some lessons that are worth learning. Most modern cartoons and movies are now focusing on proving a single point while ignoring the rest but these shows delivers audience with a burst of emotions.
If nothing works for you, then this might work for you (or turn you on). Girls often love watching fit guys working out dripping in sweat. You will see the main characters doing workout routines and exercises to keep themselves fit. If you need fitspiration and enjoys anime or you’re one of the body lovers, then start binge watching on any of these basketball animes.
All these new basketball animes are produced in such a way that all the viewers get entertained and learn some valuable lessons at same time. You might also think that most of the story of these animes are similar where teams will compete in games and championships which is quite true. But there’s more to that.
The script of all the basketball animes are somewhat different than the others, and when it comes to the basketball anime specifically, you will find a variety of tv shows to watch while having a good couch time.
For those who enjoys humour, romance or both, Slam Dunk is highly recommended. It will give you lots of good laugh.
Dear Boys is more of a slice of life anime where you would see a skilled basketball player working hard to inspire his team and improve their performance. If you are looking for some drama, try watching this basketball anime.
Not only these anime series are all about teams but some of them also tells about how to value family. Ahiru no Sora is considered as one of the best family-oriented basketball anime of all time. This is another slice of anime genre of sports anime. You should definitely watch this if you are one of those people who value family. Well, we all are so everyone can surely appreciate this anime.
Now if you’re into thriller and drama, Kuroko no Basket is the top choice in the list. It’s a story that many basketball players who are struggling to be their best can relate to.
Now go check out the above-mentioned basketball anime, get inspired and go out there to shoot some hoops. Although it’s not the same as watching NBA games or real games, it’s still a wonderful past-time to help basketball fans get inspired and entertained at the same time. I suggest it to any basketball lovers who need to unwind after a tough practice or an intense match-up.
What’s your most favourite basketball anime? Is there anything that we missed on the list? Feel free to share them in the comments below!