Photo: AP

On Monday, Ted Cruz explained his bizarre reference to “the basketball ring” at a campaign rally in Indiana by confessing he isn’t exactly Mickey Gordon when it comes to making buckets.

“It was always this distant thing,” Cruz told CNN, referring to the basketball hoop and not the Republican nomination. “I could shoot from the outside, but I never got close.”

Cruz, who told the network he played basketball for two and a half years in high school, also responded to Obama’s joking suggestion that he might next mention “baseball sticks” and “football hats.”

“Maybe President Obama has seen my vertical, which is about three inches,” said Cruz, a man who, like many of us, is at his funniest when mocking Ted Cruz.