Basketball Nets

Basketball Net

Basketball nets are an essential tool in basketball. While they are not required if being played recreationally, almost every basketball rim will have a net attached to it. Hearing the swish of a ball going through the net is one of the most satisfying sounds in sports, and there is a lot to be learned about them.

What are nets used for in basketball?

The net serves many functions in the game of basketball. One of the functions of a basketball net is to make it easier for the player to retrieve the ball. When the ball passes through the rim on an angle, the net will slow the ball down and make it easier for the player to collect underneath. Nets make it easier to see if the ball actually went through the hoop.

Things To Consider

When looking for a basketball net you'll want to consider the following:

  • What will you be using the net for?
  • Will you be putting the net on an indoor or outdoor hoop?
  • Does the net need to endure harsh weather conditions?
  • How much money do you have to spend on a basketball net?
  • What is the diameter of the rim you will be putting the net on?
  • How long do you need the net to be?


Basketball nets can either be made out of nylon/polyester or chain.

Nylon / Polyester Nets

Basketball Net Nylon Polyester

The majority of basketball nets are made out of nylon or polyester. Nylon nets are cheaper and less durable while polyester nets will have a longer lifespan at a higher cost. Nylon/polyester nets are quieter and softer and they won’t tangle as much. Almost every indoor basketball court and league uses this type of net.

Chain Nets

Basketball Net Chain

Chain nets are less common overall, but they are useful for outdoor basketball courts. Chain nets are more durable and can withstand various weather conditions, which makes them a common choice for public parks. They can also be attached to any type of rim where nylon/polyester nets can not. 


The three main materials that basketball nets are made out of are steel, nylon, and polyester.

  • Nylon: Nylon is the cheapest material that nets are made from. They look and sound similar to polyester, but are much less durable and can be greatly damaged by the weather.
  • Polyester: Polyester nets are similar to nylon but are higher quality. They sound better and last longer than nylon. Most basketball leagues use polyester nets. 
  • Steel: Steel nets are more common for outdoor basketball. With a proper coating, steel nets can last a very long time outdoors. The tough metal may cause damage to the basketball over time and could cause injury.


There are many different brands that produce basketball nets.

  • Spalding: Spalding is a company that specializes in basketball equipment. They make a lot of equipment that is used worldwide as well as in official basketball leagues. They make some of the highest quality basketball nets and are even used in the NBA.
  • Champion: Champion makes all sorts of sports of high quality sports equipment. They tend to make basketball nets that are cheaper than other brands but provide a similar quality.
  • Franklin: Franklin is a company that makes equipment for many different sports. They make chain nets as well as polyester nets.


When deciding which basketball net to buy, one must always consider the durability, cost, and size of the net.


Basketball nets tend to be very durable depending on the material. Nylon nets will last the shortest while chain nets will last the longest. Chain nets with the proper coating can be left outdoors and should last as long as the basketball hoop is up. Nylon nets may deteriorate over time and can even shrink if wet. Polyester nets will also last very long but can potentially rip.


Different types of basketball nets do not vary that much by material. Most nets can be had for under $20 with some costing as little as a few dollars. Chain nets will sometimes cost a little more as they will last the longest and are slightly more expensive to produce.


Basketball nets range in size depending on the type of net. Most nets are 15”-18” long. They all have the same 18” diameter top which encompasses the standard basketball rim. The net tapers down towards the bottom and becomes a similar size as a basketball, allowing the net to slow the ball down without stopping it entirely. The length of the net does not make a difference in the game and ultimately comes down to personal preference. Shorter nets may stop the ball easier as they tend to be stiffer than longer nets.


What nets do they use in the NBA?

The NBA uses official Spalding on-court nets. These nets are made out of polyester and are tipped with polypropylene. The addition of polypropylene makes the nets even stronger. The nets are also made with an anti-whip technology to prevent the net from getting stuck above the rim. 

How much do basketball nets cost?

Basketball nets cost anywhere from a few dollars to around $20. Official polyester nets may be slightly more expensive than nylon nets as they are more durable. Chain nets tend to be the most expensive as they cost the most to produce and are typically the most durable.

What kinds of basketball nets are used in the NBA?

The NBA uses Spalding 100% polyester nets with added polypropylene. These are the strongest polyester nets, and the anti-whip technology prevents the net from getting stuck above the rim.