Word on the Street

Pickup Revisionism (pik’-up ri-vizh’-uhn-iz’-uhm) noun. The conscious or unconscious distortion of specific events that occurred during a pickup basketball game such that certain elements of a player’s performance appear in a more or less favorable light. Pickup Revisionism appeals to the intellect using a number of techniques to advance a view. These techniques include presenting false memories as genuine, inventing reasons for distrusting accurate accounts of the game, attributing their own conclusions to other players, manipulating statistics to support their views, and deliberately misinterpreting other players’ statements.

Usage example:I remember him going something like 3-for-15 from downtown last night, but he swears he was on fire. He even described several shots I know he never made. His pickup revisionism is intense.”

Word history: I invented this term to describe how pickup ballers (*cough* Ola *cough*) regularly misremember their scoring output and/or shooting performance. It’s a takeoff of historical revisionism.

Word trivia: In most cases, pickup revisionism is used to enhance the memory of a player’s performance, usually with regards to that player’s offense (inflated scoring totals, exaggerated shooting percentages, etc.).

However, some ballers use pickup revisionism to downplay or even disparage how they played. This will lead to statements like “I missed everything” or “I couldn’t hit a layup” when in fact they did hit a few jumpers or only missed a couple layups (while making several others).

It can also be used in to negate or diminish the performance of opposing players and even teammates. (“I played great, but damn, Alex couldn’t pull down a board and Martin didn’t play a lick of defense. We would have won if not for them…”)

Later, he will remember that finger roll as a rim-rattling dunk.


Labels: Word on the Street


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