Over the years since basketball was invented, its popularity has gotten very big. The game is played all over the world and has made a lot of people rich through its many professional leagues. The National Basketball Association is, by far, the most popular league in the world, but a lot of people like to watch college, high school, and recreational basketball as much. The game of basketball is one of the most popular and exciting games to watch or play on any skill level.
In December of 1891, Dr. James Naismith was a teacher at the Young Men's Christian Association Training School in Springfield, Massachusetts. It was winter and one of his superiors, Dr. Luther Gulick, asked of Dr. Naismith to come up with a game that could be played during the winter months ("History"). Dr. Naismith had played rugby and he didn't like the roughness of that game. He wanted a team game which would get rid of most physical contact ("Basketball"). The game contained elements from American football, soccer, and hockey ("History").
Dr. Naismith contemplated the way the game should be played and what should be used for a goal. His original idea was to have a vertical goal. When he consulted some of his students, they brought to his attention that people would be able to block an attempt to score by simply raising their hand in front of the ball. He then came up with the idea of a horizontal goal in which the players would have to throw the ball in an arc. This would mean less force would be needed to get the ball in and it also meant that the opposing players wouldn't be able to block a shot so easily (Anderson, 5).
He then asked a custodian to hang to boxes from the balcony in the gym. The custodian came back and said that he only had to peach baskets. That would have to do. The first ball used was a soccer ball. Since there was eighteen kids in his class, each team consisted of nine players (Vancil). Since the baskets were placed on the balconies, which happened to be ten feet high, the players needed a ladder to get the ball out after each score.
By 1897, the size of teams had reduced to only five players and the ball was replaced with a slightly larger leather ball, very similar to what is used today ("Basketball"). As the popularity grew, more people began to go and watch th...
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...it still does. The first great pro team was the Original Celtics of 1915 ("History"). It survived the NBL and dominated the NBA. The Celtics also changed the game into a future.
The Celtics proved to be the best team in history. They were the first dynasty. Under some of the best coaches every to coach, they won an average of 57.6 wins out of 80 per season (Vancil, 12). They won eight championships in a row, and have a total of sixteen which is five more than any other team. The other great team throughout the ages was the Lakers. They won five championships in Minneapolis and six more after they moved to Los Angeles, for a total of eleven (Vancil, 26). The turning point for the NBA was the 1966-67 season. The Celtics were dominating and Bill Russell, the center for Boston, made $100,000 for that year (Vancil, 13). The fan interest was at an all-time high.
In 1951 the first All-Star Game was held. The east had five of the leagues top nine scorers and beat the west easily. Eight years later, the Basketball Hall of Fame was built in Springfield, MA. It hold the names of great players, referees, coaches, and people of importance to the development of the game of basketball.
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