The Basketball genre is by far the most underrated category of anime. The sport has so much potential in portraying great stories of passion and triumphs. Moreover, the existing shows have done justice to the epicness of this sport. But it’s the misfortune of this genre that people can name only a few of these shows. So today, we are here to familiarise you with some of the most epic basketball anime shows of all time. Without any further ado, here is a list of the 13 Best Basketball Anime.
1. Dear Boys (2003)
The first contender in our list is the A.C.G.T. Production’s Dear Boys, commonly known as Hoop Days. The plot tracks the life of a passionate basketball player, Aikawa Kazuhiko. At first, Aikawa and his team were performing with blooming colors in his previous school. But fate takes him to a new town. However, his new team is a combination of rookies. Thus, witness the journey of Aikawa as he motivates this new team into becoming one of the best.
2. Slam Dunk (1993)
Slam Dunk is a perfect tale of love and basketball. The show was originally a product of Toei Animation. So, the premise follows a hothead schoolboy, Hanamichi Sakuragi, whose only motive in life is to get a girlfriend. This is a result of his past fifty rejections. Yes, fifty! That’s where Haruko Akagi enters. She is the first girl who has approached Hanamichi. She asks him if he likes to play basketball. And we can all imagine what happens next! Of course, Hanamichi puts his heart and soul into basketball only to impress Haruko.
3. Basquash (2009)
So, Satelight Studios came up with an unconventional basketball anime a few years ago. Even you will be skeptical of the show after reading the plot. But, to everyone’s surprise, the show actually shined. So, we are on a secluded planet of Earthdash. The protagonist Dan JD is a sports enthusiast, and he has a special liking for Bigfoot Basketball. However, this sport is nothing like the basketball we are used to seeing. Surprisingly, Bigfoot robots play in the arena while the controllers sit on the Pavillion. Just watch the first two episodes of the show, and you will end up bingeing the entire 26 episodes.
4. Ro-Kyu-Bu! (2013)
A collaboration between Studios Barnum Studio and Project No.9 gave us the beautiful show that is Ro-Kyu-Bu!. Follow the endeavors of the Keishin Academy Girls’ basketball team as they try to up their game after a terrible loss. But nothing comes easy for these girls as being a weak team loses them several opportunities. Hence, do watch this encouraging story of girl power.
5. Ahiru No Sora (2019)
A pretty recent addition to the basketball genre of anime is Ahiru No Sora. Diomedéa Studios is behind this terrific tale of the underdogs. Protagonist Sora Kurumatani is a passionate individual for basketball. However, he is surprisingly short. But he never let this drawback come in the way of his gameplay. However, the real catch of the story is his new high school, where the basketball team is a plethora of leisurely boys. Thus, Sora’s real challenge is to motivate these boys and revive the spirit of basketball in the school.
6. Mitsu X Mitsu Drop (2006)
Anime Mitsu X Mitsu Drop is not particularly a basketball-centric show, but the sport plays an important role in the story’s most important arc. So, the plot of Mitsu X Mitsu Drop is set in Houjou High School, where you must have a ‘honey’ (sponsor) in order to enroll in an elite course. Protagonist Hagino Yuzuru wants to get into this course, but there are many troubles in her way. The plot ultimately leads to an epic basketball game, which will be a deciding factor for many students who aspire to enter the elite course.
7. Buzzer Beater (2005)
Buzzer Beater is a very popular anime in the basketball genre. And the reason for its insane popularity is the introduction of aliens in the sport of basketball. That’s right! Humans and aliens are pitted together on the same basketball court. Moreover, these matches are nothing short of a delight to watch. Therefore, Buzzer Beater is definitely worth your time, and you should start your basketball anime binge-list with this one.
8. I’ll/CKBC (2002)
It’s time to pick sides because this is a civil war! I’ll/CKBC is a story of a rivalry between two elite basketball players- Tachibana and Hiiragi. Surprisingly, they have always played against each other. But fate brings these two into the same team. Watch their heated rivalry as the two fight to become the best player on the team. However, this strife is causing a lot of trouble for the team. So, what will they choose between ego and sportsmanship?
9. Dash! Keppei (1981)
This one is probably the oldest anime that has made it to the list. The titular character of Keppei is a genius sports person. He is surprisingly good at every sport he plays. But this little guy is also a big pervert. Enjoy this 65-episode anime sitcom as Keppei impresses you through his basketball. But beware because he will also irritate you with his lustful actions. Overall Dash! Keppei is an enjoyable experience.
10. Kuroko’s Basketball (2012)
Anime Kuroko’s Basketball is currently one of the top basketball shows in the world. The credit for this goes to Production I.G. Follow the story of the Teiko Junior High basketball team whose players are about to graduate and separate their ways. The plot follows multiple characters as they find a career in Basketball and play as rivals against each other. Everything from playing tactics to emotional arcs is beautifully portrayed in this classic show. Thereafter, Kuroko’s Basketball is definitely worth your time.
11. Breakers (2020)
16 episode show that came out last year was Breakers. Albacrow Studios is responsible for reviving basketball in this new decade. Breakers is essentially a story of physically challenged sportsmen. Moreover, the show majorly focuses on four sports- track and high jump, wheelchair basketball, paralympic swimming, and goalball. Breakers will leave you stunned with its beautiful portrayal of para-athletes. Hence, this anime definitely deserves praise for spreading the story of these athletes.
12. Barangay 143 (2014)
A.S.I. Animation Studios and T.V. Asahi brought this amazing story to the limelight. Barangay 143 is a story of a broken team of champions who are now living ordinary lives. One of the teammates is Bren Park, who is on a personal journey of finding out the identity of his true father. But fate takes him to a different path altogether. Therefore, Barangay 143 is an engaging story of reviving one’s passion.
13. Onagawa Chuu Baske Bu: 5-nin no Natsu (2017)
Anime Onagawa Chuu Baske Bu: 5-nin no Natsu is based on the true events of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake. So, during an ongoing earthquake, Onagawa Junior High’s girls’ basketball team play their last game as there is nothing else they can do. Thus, this show will definitely bring tears to your eyes as many players lose their lives in the disastrous earthquake.
So, this was our list of the 13 Best Basketball Anime. We hope you find this helpful in picking your next binge. For more such listicles, please do come back to The Anime Daily.