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Is Adam Sandler really good at basketball?

Adam Sandler is a famous American actor that is primarily known for his roles in comedy movies. He is a prominent celebrity who has acted in numerous movies that are oriented towards sports as well. With his new film “Hustle” about Philly based NBA agent set to hit theatres his relationship to the sport is sure to be under scrutiny.

Is Adam Sandler good at basketball? Adam Sandler has featured in many basketball movies and he is a pretty good basketball player. While he may not compare to professional NBA athletes, there have been a lot of times caught on video when he was balling outside with different NBA players. 

Adam Sandler does not hide that he is an avid lover of basketball. In this article, we will go through all the important details from his life connected to basketball and the movies related to basketball where he appears. 

How Sandler Ended Up Playing Basketball? 

Sandler has always indicated that his love for different sports began in his childhood, but his admiration for basketball was something different. When he was a student and attended Manchester Central High School, Sandler joined the basketball team. He was not the greatest player in their squad, mainly because of his speed. He recalls, that due to his slow movement no one wanted him in the team. However, after complex training and workout, Sandler made it possible to develop basketball skills and he is often seen at basketball courts. Speed is still something that he did not manage to improve. 

Adam Sandler has received acclaim from another legend Shaquille O’Neal who said that he has really good skills for a non-professional player and it is difficult not to agree with Shaq. Some people even wished for Sandler to be in the new NBA2K game. However, this does not seem likely to happen in the near future.

Which is Sandler’s Favourite Team?

In addition to being a good basketball player, Adam Sandler regularly attends NBA matches. He is a fan of the New York Knicks and like Spike Lee, who also directs movies, he is often seen at Madison Square Garden. It is unknown why Adam Sandler decided to root for the Knicks, being a New Hampshire native, but it is clear that his love for basketball extends beyond just hooping as the movie star is often seen courtside at MSG. Sandler is on record as being very fond of famous basketball player Julius Erving.

Sandler in Basketball Movies

We have mentioned earlier in our article that Sandler has been actively participating in basketball movies. Let’s have a look at some of them and how Sandler positions himself in these films.

Grown Ups

Perhaps one of the best movies, that shows Sandler’s admiration towards basketball is a comedy called Grown Ups. The movie is not centred on basketball but there is an interesting scene in the movie when the character of Adam Sandler trains his son. He teaches him a famous “Tim Duncan shot” which is hitting the backboard and in such a way executing a shot from the corner. He uses this shot frequently and is always successful. At the end of the movie, when he and his friends are playing against the opposing team, he converts a lot of such shots but misses the game-winning one. In this movie, Sandler is depicted as the best player in his team.

Uncut Gems

Another movie that also demonstrates Sandler’s love for basketball is Uncut Gems, directed in 2019. The movie is actually built on a playoff between the Philadelphia 76ers and the Boston Celtics. Kevin Garnett also appears in this film. Sandler’s Howard Ratner is a slippery jeweller, unable to take control of his life. He bets a lot on basketball and constantly owes money to someone. One day Kevin Garnett comes into his shop. In fact, an NBA legend retired a few years ago as a player. But it’s 2012 in the film, and the Boston Celtics and Garnett have a winning streak against Philadelphia. The climax of the film is built around Garnett and the team playing in the next match of the series, the footage from the game is compared with the reaction of the artists. The film is already recognized as one of Sandler’s strongest works: on the authoritative review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes it has one of the highest reviews.


The movie, which is produced by another great basketball star LeBron James has not been released yet, but as the synopsis of the movie shows, Sandler will act as a basketball agent and take an up and coming prospect under his wing.

Adam Sandler Playing Basketball in Gym

You may remember in 2019 when a video surfaced which showed stand-up comedian, actor, screenwriter and producer Adam Sandler playing basketball. The game took place at the LA Fitness gym in Atlanta. One of the participants filmed the match and caught the moment when Adam Sandler gives a magnificent pass under the basket. The video went viral instantly in the US.

As we have already mentioned Adam Sandler is a big basketball fan, he is regularly noticed at the NBA games, and participation in such matches is a common thing for him. In the full video, the actor demonstrates a few more of his on court skills.

Another video, that also spread on the Internet was released in September 2021, when Sandler was hooping with elite players such as Trae Young, Jordan Clarkson, Aaron Gordon, Trae Young. He was really comfortable playing alongside these athletes and made some shots. Of course, he lacks the same speed and size but is solid at an amateur level, Sandler is a really good basketball player.