When you think of basketball, what is the first thing that comes to mind? If you are anything like me, it’s Michael Jordan. But for those who have been following the game since its inception in 1891, will tell you a different story. Basketball has come a long way from its rudimentary beginnings where players had to dribble with one hand and couldn’t run with the ball past centre court.
Rules have changed significantly over time as well. Back then there were six players per side on the court at any given time, whereas now there are five. The best players of all time may be different too – back then James Naismith invented basketball so he would not get bored working as a physical education instructor at an American college.
Today, basketball is the world’s most popular sport and has become a multi-billion dollar industry. The game has spread across all corners of the globe. With thousands of players chasing their dreams to make it big in one way or another. Whether they want to play professionally or just for fun; either way there are plenty of opportunities these days.
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James Naismith: The Creator of Basketball | Who is he?
James Naismith was born on November 15, 1861, and lived until 1939. He was an American sports coach who is best known as the inventor of basketball. He created it in 1891 to keep his students active during winter months at a YMCA training school.
Can you believe that back then there were only two peach baskets used for scoring? Later on, they switched over to metal hoops with open-ended nets which allowed players to shoot balls from all angles. The ball itself also went through many changes before reaching its current one. When Naismith first introduced the game, dribbling wasn’t even part of the rules! Nowadays this would be unheard of because almost every player can easily bounce or roll off their fingertips while running up and down the court trying to score.
From the YMCA to the NBA, to the World
The first basketball league to pop up was the YMCA. And professional leagues slowly started appearing in major cities across America during the early 1900s. Nowadays there are over a million players from all around the world that compete for millions of dollars in prize money. Including many international pro players who have been drafted into teams. That play against each other not only domestically but also internationally!
Other sports such as soccer may be more popular worldwide. But when it comes to viewership ratings and revenues generated by merchandising sales, basketball takes the number one spot without question. Basketball has become an integral part of American culture. With its stars becoming household names recognized by children and adults alike. Even if they do not actively follow any sport themselves. It is a major part of pop culture and has been featured in numerous films, television shows, and songs.
So whether you like to play basketball or not, it is impossible to ignore its impact around the world. There are people at every corner playing this game for fun all day long! Successful athletes can even make millions upon millions of dollars per year, which makes many young players strive harder than ever before to reach that level one day too.
How was the NBA formed?
The NBA first started in the year 1946 when it was called the Basketball Association of America (BAA). It became successful very quickly and eventually merged with another league that had been created due to teams disbanding after World War II. Which is how it acquired its official name – National Basketball Association.
The NBA has a total of 30 teams from a variety of different cities all around North America. Including New York City, Chicago, Miami, and Los Angeles among others. This means there are plenty more opportunities for players outside of just being part of an international team!
Best Ever Players in the History of Basketball
Many players have graced the courts of basketball. However, the very best players to ever do it in the NBA include Michael Jordan, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and Magic Johnson.
Michael Jordan became a legend when he started playing with the Chicago Bulls in 1984 and is known for his six championship wins between 1991 – 1993 and 1995 – 1998. He’s also well known for winning three consecutive Most Valuable Player awards from 1988 to 1990. Which made him one of only seven players in history to do so!
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (formerly Lew Alcindor) played basketball professionally from 1969 until 1989 but managed to win five championships during that time with the Milwaukee Bucks and Los Angeles Lakers; he was named MVP twice too! His list of achievements continues as he has been inducted into both the college basketball hall of fame and the basketball hall of fame.
Magic Johnson played from 1979 until 1996 with the Lakers after being drafted as a young player in 1978. He won five championships too which is no small feat! He was named MVP three times between 1981 – 1985 before retiring at just 32 years old due to his HIV diagnosis.
There are many more players that have been inducted into either the college or professional halls of fame because they were so talented on-court but these key names deserve a mention here for sure!
Best Teams in the History of Basketball
We couldn’t mention the best players, without mentioning the best teams to play ball. Some of the most outstanding teams are the Chicago Bulls, the Utah Jazz, and of course the Boston Celtics.
The Chicago Bulls have won six championships between 1991 – 1993 and 1995 – 1998 which is an impressive team record by anyone’s standards! They are also known for having one of the best coaches ever in Phil Jackson who was at their helm during this period too. He led them to two more wins before retiring with a total of eleven championship titles under his belt. Pretty incredible stuff!
Formed way back in 1974, The Utah Jazz is not as well-known but have still managed to pick up some impressive victories. Including nine divisional titles (some shared) along with three conference championships; they’ve never actually gone on to win that coveted NBA trophy though unfortunately… but you can’t win them all!
Founded in 1946. The Boston Celtics won their very first championship way back when they were known as the Syracuse Nationals; since then they’ve gone on to pick up 17 championships between 1957 – 1969 and 1984 – 2008 which is a pretty impressive record by anyone’s standards. They have been led by some of the greatest coaches ever. Including Red Auerbach who was at their helm from 1950 until 1966. He won an incredible nine titles during this period too.
Rule Changes in the History of Basketball
Many rules changed over the years, some of the most notable basketball rule changes were :
– The 24-second shot clock: was introduced by the NBA in 1954. It was designed to speed up games as teams were taking far too long between shots; it allowed players just one minute of basketball gameplay before they had to shoot.
– League expansion: there used to be only eight teams playing across North America including New York City, Chicago, Miami, and Los Angeles among others – this means there are plenty more opportunities for players outside of just being part of an international team!
– Defensive goaltending rules changed: before 2001 a defensive player could not touch any ball that wasn’t on its downward path towards the basket (basically within three seconds after leaving a shooter’s hands). Since then though these rules have been relaxed. So that players can touch balls that are above the cylinder or in some cases even near it.
There have also been many rule changes to try and speed up the play. Including playing just four quarters instead of five, removing timeouts after a made free throw, etc. But they’ve all had little impact so far!
In this blog, we have attempted to cover the most important rule changes and key figures that have helped define basketball as a sport. We could not fit in all of the teams or players who have shaped our love for this game over time. But hopefully, you could let us know more about how it evolved from its humble beginnings on a Canadian court. If you think there’s anything else worth mentioning here then please comment below!
Here are Some of our Favourite Basketball Sneakers
Here we will be giving more of an opinion, rather than facts. Are the sneakers worth the price that they are being sold at? Should you upgrade from your current sneakers, depending on what boots you own? What features stand out on these sneakers? If any. Does it do the job? Speed, control, stability etc. Depending on your needs/preferences. We can also mention its durability, if we have collected enough data on the specific sneakers.
What did we expect vs. what we got. Is it maybe overrated/underrated?
Here’s our pick from the very best of the bunch.
On your way to the pro leagues? Here’s our pick.
Want something to start with? Have a look at our pick.