History of Basketball

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History of Basketball

The first game of basketball was played at Springfield College in Springfield Massachusetts, USA in 1891. The rules were later changed to allow two players on each team instead of one. The sport of basketball was originally known as soccer. In 1895 college students James Naismith, John Rulon, Amos Alonzo Stagg, and Francis Schmidt came together to develop a game they called basketball. Naismith's original rule book consisted of 10 rules including how fast the game should be played. The sport grew in popularity due to its simplicity, and Naismith's original rules. By 1898 the sport had grown to the point where colleges began playing games under their own set of rules.

Early Professional Basketball

In 1902, James Naismith became an official referee. He organized the first professional basketball league in 1904. There were 12 teams competing in the league. The NBA (National Basketball Association) began play in 1946 and continues today.

National Basketball Association

Today, the NBA is considered to be the premier professional basketball league in North America and is among the world's highest paid sports leagues. The NBA features 30 teams divided into four divisions; Eastern Conference, Western Conference, Northwest Division, and Southwest Division. Each team plays 82 regular season games plus three additional pre-season games. Teams have home and away opponents in their division. After the regular season ends, the top eight teams advance to the playoffs.

Women's Basketball

Women's basketball is played by women around the world and is the second most popular girls' sport behind softball. The International Federation of Associated Football (IFAF) has sanctioned the sport since 1913 and governs international competitions. The IFAF organizes the World Girl's Junior Championship between September and October.

Amateur Athletic Union

The AAU, founded in 1896, is the oldest existing national governing body for amateur athletics in the United States. Its mission is to promote amateur athletic programs throughout the nation, encourage fair play and integrity in those programs, and safeguard the rights of athletes and coaches.

Olympic Games

Basketball has been played at the Summer Olympics since 1900. Since then basketball has become the third most popular sport after football and swimming. The first Summer Olympics to feature men's basketball were held in Paris, France in 1900. The U.S. won gold medals in both 1908 and 2012.

Basketball Hall of Fame

The Basketball Hall of Fame is located in Springfield, Massachusetts. It honors individuals who have made significant contributions to the sport of basketball. Inductees are honored annually in April.

Basketball History Starts with a Game Called “Skeet”

The first recorded game was played in 1891, between two teams from Boston. It was called Skeet and lasted 11 minutes. In 1895 the game grew a little bit larger and became known as basketball after James Naismith came up with a scoring system. The game became highly popular during the Great Depression.

Charles Barkley Is a Legend

Charles Barkley was born in Philadelphia in 1962. He is a former NBA player who won five MVP awards and seven championships titles. He is also known for his colorful personality and often says things that make headlines. He was suspended twice during his career due to his profanity laced interviews. His most famous line comes from his infamous interview where he says, “I don’t have to dribble! I am Charles Barkley! I can shoot!”

Michael Jordan Was A True Champion

Michael Jordan was born in St. Louis Missouri on March 13th 1963. He is regarded as one of the greatest players in NBA history. He led his Chicago Bulls team to six NBA Championships during his time. He is also famous for his iconic Nike shoes and his legendary ‘fluid style of play.

Larry Bird Played Ball at Indiana University

Larry Bird was raised in Indianapolis, IN. At the age of 16 he left school to join the National Guard. After leaving the military, he went to college at Indiana University. There he received many honors including All-American, NCAA Final Four Most Outstanding Player, and NCAA MOP.

Kobe Bryant Is One Of The Best Players Ever

Kobe Bryant was born in Manhattan Beach California on February 17th 1979. He is regarded as the best player in the NBA today and even though he retired back in 2013, he still holds several records. He is probably most known for being named the regular season MVP three times in the last four years.

What does “basketball” mean?

Basketball is a game played between two teams of five players each; they shoot at a basket (usually a pole) using a ball called a "basketball". If the player gets the ball past the rim of the basket he scores a point, if not, then no points are scored. Two teams compete against each other to score the most points.

Image by Nico Franz from Pixabay

How did basketball start?

The first recorded basketball game took place at Harvard University in 1891. Basketball was invented by James Naismith, a Canadian physical education teacher who wanted to find a way to keep his students physically fit and entertained. He created a simple game using peach baskets and a softball-sized rubber ball. His idea caught on and soon enough, other schools around the country were playing basketball.

Who was the first NBA superstar?

In 1954, Bill Russell became the first NBA MVP, after leading the Boston Celtics to a league championship. In 1962, Wilt Chamberlain won the scoring title, becoming the first man to average 100 points per game in a season. However, his career ended at the hands of Dr. J., who famously dunked over him.

Which three guys dominated the 1980's?

Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, and Larry Bird led their respective teams to back-to-back championships in 1986 and 1987. These three players were known as the "Big Three."

Which two players dominated the 1990’s?

Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant both have had tremendous success in the NBA throughout the 1990's and 2000's respectively. Shaq is widely considered to be the greatest center ever and Bryant is generally regarded as being the best shooting guard in the history of the sport. Their rivalry helped fuel the popularity of the NBA until 2011.

Which two players dominated early 21st century?

Kevin Durant and LeBron James both have been dominant forces in the NBA since 2010. KD holds many records including most triple doubles, most playoff games, and most regular seasons wins. Lebron James is the only player in history to win a scoring title, an MVP award, and a Finals MVP award before turning 24 years old.

Who was the last great NBA team?

The San Antonio Spurs are the greatest current iteration of an NBA dynasty. Led by Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili, Tony Parker, and company, the Spurs have had several consecutive 50+ win seasons and have won 13 titles. Since 2004, they have never lost a finals matchup and have gone 22 straight playoffs appearances without losing a single series.

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