Basketball History
The History of Basketball

Basketball Sub-Site
Basketball History

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History in Chronological Order

The Game of Basketball was invented in December of 1891 by a Canadian Physician James Naismith who first organized the game when he was an instructer at the YMCA now known as Springfield College in Springfield, Massachusetts.

The game was such a hit with Dr Luther H Gulick who was Naismith's Supervisor that he requested for the game to be recreated for winter indoor play. At first the game was said to involve elements of American Football, Soccer and Hockey but these were just a means to describing the new game to outsiders.

The first ball actually used was a soccer ball. The Teams had 9 players and the goals were simply peach baskets attached to two walls at opposite ends of the gymnasium.

-In the U.S. a certain number of colleges started playing the game.

In 1897-1898:
-Teams of five became standar. -The game rapidly spread nationwide and to neighbouring Canada and eventually to many other parts of the world-The Game became popular as an outdoor informal game for anyone to play including men and women.

In 1898 the First Pro League, the NBL (National Basketball League) was created to protect its players from exploitation and to promote the game as less rough. The league didn't last too long as it disbanded in 1903. Its disappearance created a few poorly organized leagues throughout the north-Eastern United States.

In 1915:
-One of the first and and as far as Basketball history goes, the greatest teams to ever play Basketball was formed. The Celtics, organized in New York played as many as 150 games in a season and completely dominated Basketball until 1936.

In 1934:
-Basketball History had a mile stone when the first college games took place in New York's Madison Square Garden Stadium and this is when college level basketball started to get high levels of interest.

By 1950:
-Basketball took the world by storm and was a major college sport and therefore leading the way into a more professional stage.

In 1939-1945:
-U.S. servicemen in the 2nd world war (1939-1945) made the sport popular in many other countries worldwide.

In 1927:
-The Harlem Globetrotters who were formed as an exhibition team, specialized in amusing court tricks and pro level, expert ball handling. This was a huge step in basketball history giving it the well known "Razzle Dazzle" Effect.

In 1949:
-The two original Leagues, the National Basketball League and the BAA (Basketball Association of America) combined and merged into what we know today as the NBA (National Basketball Association).

In 1959:
-The Basketball Hall of Fame was founded in Springfield, Massachusetts. It included the names of great players, coaches, referees, and many other people who have contributed significantly to the development and success of the game of Basketball.

The Boston Celtics, with their infamous center Bill Russell, dominated the NBA from the late 1950s into the 1960s. But by the 1960s, there were Millions watching basketball as pro teams from coast to coast were being formed.

The LA Lakers with Wilt Chamberlain as their center created a clash with Russel and these events were always eagerly anticipated. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar who was also a center player completely perfected his famous "sky hook" shot when playing for the LA Lakers and completely dominated the team's opposition.

All this was great, however....
After a Burst of initial Popularity the NBA suffered a huge drop in popularity in the late 1970s but was quickly revived by the huge popularity of prominent players such as Larry Bird of the Boston Celtics, and Magic Johnson of the LA Lakers. These players were renouned for creating a new excitment into the leage throughout the 70s and 80s.

Then came along the best man to have ever played the Game....

Michael Jordan's huge popularity raised him to stardom becoming famous worldwide and leading the Chicargo Bulls into back to back champtionships in the early 1990s making him in most people's eyes the Greatest player in Basketball History.

Now a New Generation of Stars has brought the NBA to its highest level of popularity in basketball history with players such as Shaquille O'Neal, Kobe Bryant, Lebron James, Dwight Howard and Kevin Garnett and have secured the future success of basketball for hundreds of years to come.

Basketball History all Brushed up? Make sure you know your Terminology. Click here to study the Basketball Dictionary.