It’s that time of the year, ladies. March Madness. Maybe some of you love it, maybe some of you are completely over it. Either way, I think we can all agree to celebrate the basketball hunks from our favorite movies and TV shows.
1. Nathan Scott in One Tree Hill
Holy moly, of course we had to start it out with good ol’ 23. Season one was rough with his barely-pubescent acne and gangly limbs to follow suit. But by the end of the show, we were weeping when he made the NBA and thanked Haley for her part in his journey getting there. He always looked damn good in his jersey, and that shot he made without looking may have made our ovaries explode.
2. Lucas Scott in One Tree Hill
We suppose we can include the other Scott brother, although he is arguably the worst character of the OG students on OTH. He is more appealing as a basketball player than as his brooding writer self (way too moody most of the time) but has to quit because of his heart condition. His comeback in the last episode of season four is probably his peak, particularly because he FINALLY ends up with Peyton—although his hair could’ve definitely used some work.
3. Troy Bolton in High School Musical
Although our boy Zac sang about four lines in this movie, he proved himself by strutting his moves—both in basketball and dance. “Get’cha Head in the Game” will forever be etched into our brains, particularly when he reaches out into our hearts and then feverish break-dancing commences around him. When he teaches Gabriella to play, there is no one we’d rather be than that “freaky math girl” with the curly dark hair.
4. Chad Danforth in High School Musical
While Chad frequently tries to drive a wedge between Troy and Gabriella, it’s only because he cares about his friend and basketball so much. He’s certainly misguided in his relationships, but in the end, he finally gets it with Taylor. And you’ve gotta admit, he’s got some pretty smooth moves (if some completely dorky t-shirts).
5. Troy Bolton in High School Musical 2
Okay, so same guy, different movie. I think it counts because there is a transformation from this sandy blonde cutie to a hunk with nearly black hair that makes his baby blues pop unforgettably. And apparently he can also play golf? Nothing like a guy with some range. There is significantly less b-ball in this film, and he’s harder to forgive for screwing up, but he makes up for it by *leaps* and *bounds* in “Bet On It.” See what I did there?
6. Troy Bolton in High School Musical 3
You guessed it. The fact that this opens on Troy sweating on the basketball court gives him much cred as a hoops man, but everything he does off the court is what seals the deal. He dances with Gabriella on the roof in the rain and then drives like a bajillion miles to dance with her again, skipping prom in the process. Plus, are you kidding me with the pelvic thrust in the baby blue suit and ruffled shirt? Honestly one of the best moments in cinematic history. Makes us laugh every time.
7. Mark/Mike O’Donnell (aka Zac Efron as another basketball player) in 17 Again
Basically, we just can’t get enough of Zefron. Can you blame us? He begins as a sweetie with curly locks who gives up his dream of becoming a basketball star to pursue his pregnant girlfriend, Scar. When he becomes *17 again*, he’s even hotter. His little roast session of Stan in the middle of the cafeteria establishes him as both a fox and an extremely crafty player. The scene when he slides out of his car and shrugs on his leather jacket is just—oof. That’s all.
8. John Tucker in John Tucker Must Die
John Tucker definitely has his flaws (I mean, HELLO, look at the title of the film), but that doesn’t mean he isn’t totally charming. He’s the top dog of the basketball team, and his demeanor off the court shows just that, but just like his several girlfriends, we can’t help but fall under his spell. The scene in which he gives Kate his watch and proclaims he’s whipped is what makes us feel for him every time, regardless of what we know about him and his lady-killer ways.
9. Woodchuck Todd in Easy A
Okay, okay, okay. So I’m totally cheating on this—Woodchuck Todd is the mascot, he doesn’t even play. (There is a surprising lack of hot basketball players in movies and TV shows!) But he dunks (and almost dunks) the ball, like, twice. Plus he’s hot. And super-sarcastic and caring and wonderful. So basically, what does it matter? Penn Badgley also plays John Tucker’s brother; maybe basketball skills run in the family?
So who is in your Final Four? We won’t call you a cheater if you simply say “Zac Efron.”