On Friday night, Spokane Hoopfest hosted the Spokane Hoops 3x3 World Invitational.
It featured elite teams from around the country playing the version of half court basketball that will soon be featured in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
The rules of Olympic-style 3x3 basketball are governed by the International Basketball Federation, or FIBA, and they differ starkly from the traditional three-on-three rules played at Spokane Hoopfest.
Ultimately, the differences mostly come down to pacing; 3x3 operates at an even faster pace than three-on-three.
Here are some of the most notable changes.
Shorter game time
The most obvious difference is certainly the shorter length of each game.
Hoopfest games max out at 25 minutes. FIBA 3x3 games last only 10 minutes.
To maintain such a fast pace and keep the score up, 3x3 games have a shot clock.
And it's a doozy, too. Teams get only 12 seconds to get up a shot that hits the rim.
That barely allows any time for longer plays to form. You'll frequently see possessions with only one pass or without any passes at all.
Traditional Hoopfest games do not have a shot clock.
Traditional Hoopfest games feature a line further away from the basket than the two-point arc. It effectively serves as a halfcourt line.
After each bucket, the team taking control of the ball must take it beyond the line and "check" it with their opponent.
After every defensive rebound, the rebounding team must take the ball beyond the line before they can shoot it.
No such line exists in FIBA 3x3 games.
Instead, after a bucket, the ball remains live. The team taking control need only bring the ball beyond the 2-point arc before they can shoot. They do not need to check it. The same applies for defensive rebounds.
This makes for a lot of rapid-fire shooting.
More points for victory
Hoopfest games require 20 points to win, unless the 25-minute clock runs out.
3x3 games require 21 points, unless the 10-minute clock runs out.
That means to win before the buzzer, 3x3 teams need to score more points than Hoopfest teams and in less than half the time.
Winners don't always reach the 21-point mark, but it happens often. Part of that can be attributed to the shot clock forcing up more shots and the lack of a halfcourt line, but it also is testament to how talented the 3x3 teams typically are.