we don't got game

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Porteño

Member Emeritus
British English
Hi, one and all. I have come across the above expression in relation to basketball, according to the Net, apparently a film of the same name was produced at some time. However,I haven't the first idea what it means and haven't been able to find anything on the Net to explain it. Can anybody help, please? :)
 
  • GenJen54

    Senior Member
    USA - English
    I've never seen "we don't got game," but I am certainly familiar with "we got game," "he got game," "she got game." Note the connecting verb "have" is not used here.

    As you noted, it is a US colloquial expression whose roots can be traced back to US basketball.

    If someone has game, they are a good player. They can hold their own on the court.
     

    Porteño

    Member Emeritus
    British English
    Many thanks, I guess that the expression I quoted means to say 'we are no good'. It makes sense in the dialog from which it was taken,
     

    Porteño

    Member Emeritus
    British English
    It's part of a dialogue in a screenplay when two guys are discussing why a particular student has all the luck with girls because he is the first team and they are in the second team. One of them says 'because unlike M, we don't got game.'
     

    GenJen54

    Senior Member
    USA - English
    There is a double-entendre here, which I should have mentioned before.

    In addition to "game" being the game on the basketball court, it can also refer to the "game of love." In this sense, someone who got game is, in all senses of the words, a playa (that's player, not beach). He also got game with the ladies and knows how to put his moves on them.

    You do refer to the one guy being on the A team. This is the varsity, or good team. As such, he is supposedly more desirable because of his athletic prowess.

    There are all kinds of subtextual nuances in this scene, it appears.
     

    padredeocho

    Banned
    United States
    "To have game" means to be supurb at the thing in question: "Dude, that lawyer's got game today." In other words, he is doing a fantastic job in there!
     

    Porteño

    Member Emeritus
    British English
    Many thanks for all the contributions. The double entendre has also occurred to me GenJen54, thanks for clarifying it. So in the end 'we don't got game' means we're no good, or in the case of GenJen54, we haven't got 'oomf' (for those not BE this means sex appeal)
     
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