What is a Field Goal in Basketball?

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In basketball, a field goal is a successful attempt to score points by throwing the ball through the opponent’s basket. It is the most common way to score in the game, and is worth either two or three points, depending on the distance from the basket from which the shot was taken.

Types of Field Goals

There are two main types of field goals:

  • Two-point field goal: This is a shot taken from inside the three-point line, which is a semi-circle that is 23 feet 9 inches from the basket.
  • Three-point field goal: This is a shot taken from outside the three-point line.

Value of Field Goals

The value of a field goal depends on the distance from which it is taken:

  • Two-point field goal: Worth two points
  • Three-point field goal: Worth three points

Shooting Percentage

A player’s shooting percentage is a statistic that measures how often they make field goals. It is calculated by dividing the number of field goals made by the number of field goals attempted. A good shooting percentage is typically considered to be around 50%.

Factors that Affect Field Goal Success

There are many factors that can affect a player’s field goal success, including:

  • Shooting form: This refers to the way a player holds the ball, releases it, and follows through with their shot.
  • Shot selection: This refers to the type of shots a player takes and the distance from which they take them.
  • Defensive pressure: The closer a defender is to a player when they shoot, the more difficult it is to make the shot.
  • Fatigue: As players tire, their shooting percentage often decreases.

Importance of Field Goals

Field goals are essential for winning basketball games. Teams that shoot a higher percentage of field goals than their opponents are more likely to win. This is because field goals are the most efficient way to score points.


Field goals are the most common way to score in basketball and are essential for winning games. There are many factors that can affect a player’s field goal success, including shooting form, shot selection, defensive pressure, and fatigue.

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