One of the greatest ideas in all of youth sports is using a developmental basketball. For younger kids, it is easier to use a "women's" basketball of 28.5 inches compared to the men's regulation 29.5 inch ball. When our second grader needed a new basketball, we shopped away and came back with a very value, high quality, basketball which can be used indoors at the gym or outdoors in our driveway. The Spalding NBA Excel fit the bill. Why the Spalding when there are so many other choices out there?
Recommend this product?
* The price! It was under $30, $29.99 plus we had a savings coupon and coaches rate, bringing the ball to $22 at our local sports mart.
* Trying to get three years out of the ball, max, and I think we will because of the quality
* Tacky-tacky-tacky, the ball is very grippy for outdoor use. Kids around here play nearly year round, even with mittens on!
What about the ball? I am taking this off of the carton, so I take Spalding's word:
* The Spalding NBA Official Zi/O Excel indoor/outdoor composite basketball
* Features a Zi/O composite leather cover
* Foam-backed design
* Full ball pebbling for enhanced performance and feel
* Ball is designed for competitive indoor/outdoor play
* Zi/O is a Spalding design
* Deep channel design, 30 percent deeper for better grip and dribble control, nice outside play
Personally? It is great for outdoor play, doesn't cost an arm and a leg. I looked at the TF1000, and that is over $50. We are dealing with an 8 year old who still has a tendency to leave things outside, so I did not want to invest too much. Why an intermediate, 28.5 size? Great for training and development. The smaller ball is easier to handle and shoot, fun to dribble. Shop-shop-shop. I have seen the ball on the Internet for $34.99 but with coupons and discounts, you can buy it for under $25, which is a huge bargain. You can pay a lot more and not get an extremely better ball.
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