Float to the Top



In every guard’s arsenal there should be a set of tools. If they’re lucky, one of those will be a floater, one of the deadliest tools in the game.

Who invented the shot is unclear. However, smaller players have been using it against bigger players for quite some time. Elevating off of one or two feet, but always using one hand, the floater gives the little guys a greater chance. For anybody 6’3″ and under (with the exception of AI and Nate Robinson) it’s a must-have skillset.

Mark Jackson used it when he ran with the Pacers in the 90’s. Part of his repertoire since his St. John’s days, Jackson was the owner of the floater, with great handle, speed and ability to penetrate. As a younger player, one can usually get by simply being fast. By the time high school rolls around, though, it doesn’t work anymore. The same player can’t keep going down there with the taller players. The pull-up, awesomely effective in it’s own right, is one option, but the floater adds more panache.

Instead of fighting to get all the way to the rim by trying to go through bigger players, with this move, one can go over, gently lofting the rock over the outstretched arms of opposing centers. Sometimes high-arching, at other times kissing it off the backboard; it is a beautiful thing as it softly drops in the rim. A sweet tear-drop, despite great D, can absolutely zap an opponent.

Along with Jackson back in the 90′s, Gary Payton, also used the shot to great success. Taking the torch from them was Tony Parker, who displayed his beautiful floater on plenty of occasions while assisting the Spurs to three championships in six years. More recently, Ben Gordon, Chris Paul and Rajon Rondo have given the shot much play, but it’s Derrick Rose, who is the proprietor of the sickest floater in the game right now. Already a major problem with his extremely consistent jumper and ability to finish at the rim, the floater is his in-between game. He usually rises off two feet, and shoots it with his right, using his athleticism to further elevate over bigger defenders.

Kemba Walker is one of many showing how it’s done on the college level, using it to propel himself to a career-high scoring average and First-Team All-American status. Most recently, Walker won the 2011 Bob Cousy Award and led UConn to the national championship, so the power of the floater at many levels has been magnified in 2011.

Photo Credit: NBA

  • http://www.facebook.com/streetdigest Street Digest

    Ha, the bright side of sports… Where we from, basketball players sling crack rock AND got a wicked jump shot.

    Check http://www.streetdigest.com for the RAW street news feed.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=48606049 Jahbari Townsend

    Wow! Walker traveled is ass off lol!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=48606049 Jahbari Townsend

    wow! Kemba Walker traveled his butt off lol

  • Dirtydansanchez

    no travel 2 steps then off the ground

  • Dirtydansanchez

    no travel 2 steps then off the ground

  • http://www.facebook.com/sherod.dixon Sherod Dixon

    Kemba…Kemba…Kemba…Big uPs to the 2011 NCAA Champs UConn Huskies

  • http://Vice-Mia.com Vice-Mia

    gotta give it up to Jalen Rose of the Fab Five, he invented the floater

  • http://Vice-Mia.com Vice-Mia

    Jalen Rose started that movement, Fab 5 for life

  • Anonymous

    He traveled but there also should have been a foul. But gotta give it up he’s awesome he should have been player of the year though

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Alex-Galdamez-Arce/100000651183531 Alex Galdamez-Arce

    holy shit….i hate it when i cant block floater lol

  • Anonymous


  • Anonymous

    uconn all day

  • http://twitter.com/Wagsford D Wags

    how you not gonna mention Stephon Marbury, go back and watch my dude do his thing w his floater, over and over again…

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_4A6PGKUV5Y34LPWQBEWH7BM4MQ Ramell

    Jalen Rose Invented the Floater??? You ppl must be crazy… Take a look at NYC Legend Mark Jackson….

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_TK4VVDVGUAX4UPOYWZCOMPPZUI Christian Castro

    Kemba Walker’s floater is alright but the best floater in the game right now has to belong to Rajon Rondo

  • http://twitter.com/jzajzz jzajzz

    How come anyone make an article talking about floaters without mentioning God Shamgod

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_CVFSCBOZLM5PW2YOSL3RJMYX7U Keonte

    youngins’……Tony Parker has the sickest floater to date…and I hate the Spurs…not even a fan of TP!!!

  • http://twitter.com/G5TY Tyler Grant

    i feel the floater is only being recognized right now, because no one currently utilizes the sky hook..last i checked the guy that still holds the all-time scoring title used that .. #jussayin

  • http://twitter.com/tourist2townie Gareth Leonard

    This site is incredible. More Travel!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Monanolisa-John/1141396817 Monanolisa John

    a tear jerker for the most random of thingz….i’m LOLin…@ the same time appreciatin your passion for this intricate move. bigupz.

  • http://twitter.com/scottiedigital Scott Velicer

    2 words – Sherman Douglas. Nuf said.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000170580242 Edward Kiki Taylor

    That was a walk. He took three steps! Bounce, one step then two more. Three

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