Even though they’re not very well known, the bench guys can instill some enthusiasm and excitement all their own while pumping up their playing teammates with every towel wave and fist pump. Let’s take a look at the top 10 bench celebrations over the 2012/13 NBA season.
Being a 12th man—or the 13th, 14th and 15th man on an NBA roster—can be a humbling experience. Especially considering the last player’s on an NBA bench could probably star in any other league in the world, and would certainly be destroying guys at the local gym or YMCA. But just because they might be some of the finest basketball players in the NBA, they’re not quite good enough to get much playing time.
But that hasn’t stopped a lot of bench buys from upping the ante on celebrations when their teammates do something spectacular. Occasionally, as you’ll see below, the stars are leading the bench in celebratory gestures as their lesser known teammates do something incredible—usually in garbage time.
But if you can’t get excited for your teammates then there’s something wrong with you, and we’ve all gesticulated, yelled, and jumped around when our favorite teams pull off the extraordinary. Here are the top 10 bench celebrations for the 2013 season in gif form:
10. JaVale McGee holds back the “Manimal” Kenneth Faried
When JaVale McGee is trying to keep you under control, then something’s up. The Manimal might have the cover for the new ESPN the Magazine Body Issue, but Faried’s going bizerko style if McGee is the voice of reason.
9. Kent Bazemore Leg Kick
Bazemore’s leg kick is actually enough of a thing now, there’s a name for the whole thing: Bazemoring. We hope Bazemore has plenty more to leg kick about when the Warriors tip-off next year, but first he’s gotta remain with the team long enough for his enthusiasm to catch on; he spent some time in the D-League during his rookie year with the Warriors.