Last night’s tim-tam flim-flam Ballers, Baby, Ballers! television program on premium network HBO was either exactly what you needed after a holiday weekend or a bludgeoning to your skull, and possibly both. And the ballers? Well, this Independence Day weekend: They finally balled. And they balled hard.

Where did we last leave Spencer Strasmore and his gang of merrymen, in particular the obnoxious-and-I-still-cannot-believe-he-was-cast-in-this-role Rob Corddry? Here’s where things were left after last week’s episode: The deals were about to be dealt, and the suits were being made custom—for a price.

While many of us decided to watch Ballers with the understanding that Dwayne Johnson would be the show’s only actor—playing every role from financial planner to football player to jaunty yacht boy—Corddry is now fully embedded as Strasmore’s partner in doing bidness. It is too late for any of us to back out now.

We begin episode the third by boarding The Old Man. Naming your yacht The Old Man is a fairly legendary and irreverent—dare we even say “epic”?—move, especially for a character the viewer is yet to meet. This episode of Ballers has begun strong with six out of ten balls awarded. Ahoy, ballers!

We quickly learn that this yacht is owned by the ballers’ boss—yes, even ballers must answer to someone—who immediately punks both Strasmore and Joe by demanding that they remove their shoes and place them in a little bitch basket. Ahahahhaa suckers. Eight of ten balls for this bomb move that puts two adult men in their rightful place.

Strasmore and No-Last-Name Joe then compliment their boss on the beautiful yacht—The Old Man—which bossman goes on to tell them is, “Custom built—kinda like your suit.” This is not the last time Strasmore’s custom suits will be mentioned on this episode of Ballers, and the oversupply of this reference means the ball value of Strasmore’s custom suits will quickly deflate. For now, five out of ten balls will be given, for the sake of consistency for former mentions of Strasmore’s custom suits. Next time, the balls will not be doled out with such liberty.

What has landed both ballers on their boss’s yacht, we wonder. Punishment? A prize? Perhaps a champagne brunch? A deal—the true sustenance of all ballers?


They need to borrow the yacht. As Strasmore explains, “We’re going to hold a corporate event and bring more high-income athletes to the company.” These are his exact words and for the blunt, bare, clear directness of his language, I afford him one bonus ball. Mother, may we borrow your yacht so that we might hold a corporate event and bring more high-income athletes to the company?

“Ask me if you can fuck my wife! Are you out of your mind?”


A wonky transition and only seconds later and the yacht has somehow landed into the shaky hands of Anderson Financial Management anyway, which seems a little bit like an un-baller move on behalf of the big boss, but what’s done is done and cannot be reversed. This is the corporate event that Strasmore and Joe have thrown in order to attract more high-income athletes to the company:

“Look at all these potential clients,” Corddry says.

He is, of course, talking about pussy. Zero out of ten balls.

The party has all the trappings of a classic Miami soiree:

Ladies half-dressed, fully equipped
And they be screamin out: “Will we loved your last hit”
So I’m thinkin I’ma scoot me somethin hot
In this South Sea merengue melting pot
Hottest club in the city, and it’s right on the beach
Temperature get to ya, it’s about to reach
Five-hundred degrees
In the Caribbean Seas, with the hot mommies
Screamin “Aii papi”

Except “Joe” finds that he can’t exactly hang. He yells out things like, “Boating, booze, and boobs: the holy trinity of fun.” He motorboats strange women. He thinks that he is a baller—but in truth he is more of an embarrassment. An emballersment. No balls, once again.

Strasmore, on the other hand, tells a group of men, “My dreams right now are all about deals and dollars.” Classic! Eight out of ten balls given for such manageable and sweet dreams.


one more time


The coach of the Miami Dolphins—in the middle of the party, without warning or notice, does he look like he gives a fuck—announces that he is leaving, which is the opposite of an Irish exit.

He needs to do this so that none of his players “act up” or do anything bad enough to appear on “TMZ, Deadspin, or Page fucking Six.” While blasting a megaphone at a massive party just to say that you are leaving is undoubtedly a baller move, any mention of the website Deadspin on television affords you no balls. Ten out of ten balls are struck from the record to make zero out of ten balls. Nice try, Deadspin.

“This is custom-made!” Strasmore’s custom suit gets referenced again. Three out of ten balls.

The party escalates. Babes are everywhere. The day turns to night. The coach of the Miami Dolphins has long since exited. Nothing bad could possibly happen.

Joe: Anderson Financial: Get Rich, Get Laid, Have Fun.
Strasmore: Put that on the letterhead.

All right, man. Seven out of ten balls.

This party looks fun and completely packed with people, though the sketchball in the manbun and hoodie might have you believe otherwise. When watching the actual show, it appears that the music playing really does not sync up in any way with the rhythm of the people dancing, but what baller has ever let music dictate how he dances? Six out of ten balls. Why not.

There are several gratuitous scenes of football players doing coke off of naked women’s bodies, as well as people drinking molly water, sweating a lot, and looking generally vivacious and in the height of their lives. We are led to believe that this is an “epic” party and tomorrow, many people will have “big” hangovers. But for now? Ten out of ten balls. Bailomos!

The episode ends, as all good parties do, with a fight and an ethnic slur. Strasmore, in an attempt to show that he’s good at business, pushes one of his client’s best friends into a DJ booth. Joe “Rob Corddry” Joe is high on molly and says the n-word. A crowd throws him into a pool.

On the outside, we are cheering while on the inside we are crying. Seven balls out of ten. Will we see scenes from this “epic” party on “Deadspin” next week? Let’s hope not.

Until then.

Ballers episode three balling average: 5.83 plus 1 bonus ball.

Screenshots via HBO. Contact the author at