Top 5 Celebrations in the NBA
The Dikembe Mutombo finger wag is an iconic celebration.Part of playing basketball is having fun with the game, enjoying the good moments and sometimes taking the bad ones a little too hard. Along the enjoyment lines is watching one of your favorite players in the league make a big play for his team and then celebrate with his own unique celebration. Celebrations can be funny, they can send a message, and sometimes they just let you know the player is having as much fun possible playing the game. With salaries getting bigger and bigger in the NBA, some fans accuse the players of only caring about the money, but, to me, celebrations let fans know that these are proud men who are fighting tooth and nail to win a game, while also immensely enjoying themselves and wanting to put a show on for the fans.Many players in the league do their own unique celebrations that you can see emulated on the playground everyday. Some celebrations come and go, but there are some that resonate with fans and become apart of basketball culture. For example, the above Dikembe Mutombo finger wag is a celebration that many players today copy when they block a shot attempt. Celebrations don’t have to be much, as a finger wag is a very simple gesture, but whether they are simple or elaborate, a good celebration is always fun to watch.
#1 Wes Matthews Shoots His Arrow
We begin first with Wes Matthews, seen here with the Portland Trail Blazers, and now playing with the Dallas Mavericks. Wes began doing this celebration a few years ago almost every time he would knock down a three-point basket. It a very simple celebration, where he mimics pulling out an arrow from the imaginary quiver on this back before shooting the arrow with his imaginary bow, but it goes perfect with his ability to knock three point shots down in volume (he is second in the league since 2011-2012 in three-point makes).
It is also a perfect fit because, as some who is a good shot with a bow and arrow is called a marksman, so is someone who can knock down a high number of three-point shots.
What makes this celebration stick as a top one in the NBA is how much it has caught on with fans and teammates alike. In the above gif, you can see him doing the celebration with one of his teammates, as they clearly enjoy doing the celebration almost as much as Wes does. Sometimes fans clamor that celebrations are just a look at me gesture, but in an 82 game season that can turn into a grind, players need ways to let out enjoyment and this is one that Wes has been doing for years while also getting his teammates involved.