It’s time to forgive LeBron James for Space Jam: A New Legacy. It’s still a bad movie, one of the worst of 2021, but as an act of repentance, he’s given us a better basketball movie. Hustle is produced by James and Adam Sandler, who plays a basketball scout who discovers a generational talent (Utah Jazz forward Juancho Hernangómez) with a rocky past. “I love this game, I live this game. There’s a thousand other guys waiting in the wings who are obsessed with this game,” Sandler tells the overseas player who he thinks could become an NBA super-star. “Obsession is going to beat talent every time. You got all the talent in the world, but are you obsessed?” This is how you win.
Hustle was “written originally that I find a player in China,” Sandler said on The Dan Patrick Show last year, but “somehow, Netflix is not in China. So they were like, ‘Would you guys please make it so we find someone in Latin America or Europe?’ So the next thing you know, I’m in Majorca [Spain].”
Here’s the official plot description:
After discovering a once-in-a-lifetime player with a rocky past abroad, a down on his luck basketball scout (Adam Sandler) takes it upon himself to bring the phenom to the States without his team’s approval. Against the odds, they have one final shot to prove they have what it takes to make it in the NBA.
Hustle — which also stars Queen Latifah, Ben Foster, and Robert Duvall, as well as real-life NBA players Anthony Edwards, Tobias Harris, Seth Curry, Matisse Thybulle, and Tyrese Maxey, among others — hits Netflix on June 10.