Today, I’ll be presenting 17 facts about basketball to you. I decided to start a facts feature where I list some quick trivia pertaining to particular sports, athletes, etc. Because of the dynamic nature of sports and its personnel, there will always be more facts lists you can read so check back in from time to time.
Ready? Here are your 17 basketball facts.
Links to other facts lists are available at the end of this article.
- Prior to the 1950’s, passing was the only means of ball movement.
- Dr. Naismith invented the game in order to keep student athletes fit and healthy during winter months. The game was created in December 1891.
- Wat Misaka was actually the first non white player to play in the NBA. He is of Japanese descent. (Yes, he still alive and kicking).
- A peach basket with the bottom intact was the original hoop. Over time, the bottom of the basket was removed to improve efficiency because the time and effort it took to retrieve the ball from the hoop was too great
- Basketball was originally played with a soccer ball until Tom Hinkle introduced the ball currently in use during the 1950’s.
- Metal hoops and backboards were introduced in 1906.
- The first official game was played early 1892 and ended 1-0 on a 25 foot shot – that’s behind the NBA’s 3 point line!
- Different 3 point lines:
NBA – 23.75 feet
WNBA and FIBA – 22.15 feet
NCAA – 20.75 feet
High School – 19.75 feet
- Unlike at the college and professional levels, there is no tournament to determine a national high school basketball champion.
- Basketball was demonstrated at the 1904 Summer Olympics and included in the lineup in 1936; The USA defeated Canada to win the first basketball Olympic Gold Medal.
- The tallest players to ever play in the NBA are Manute Bol and Gheorghe Muresan; both standing at 7 feet 7 inches tall. The shortest player is still Muggsy Bogues at 5’3″.
- Up to 1938, jump balls were used to restart the game after each basket.
- Though the Elbow Hang or Honey Dip dunk was popularized by Vince Carter during the 2000 NBA Slam Dunk Contest, Kobe Bryant had done it two years prior in the Phillipines. See the video below:
- Wilt Chamberlain was the catalyst for the rule that both feet must remain behind the line on a free throw attempt. In the 1950’s, he was able to dunk from the free throw line by starting his forward movement at the top of the free throw circle.
- Six on six basketball is an archaic version of basketball where guards play defense only and forwards play on offense only.
- Basketball is the national sport of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.
If you made it to the end of this list I hope you enjoyed it. You may be wondering why I chose such a weird number as 17. It actually really simple, I was initially going with 10 but I read somewhere that odd numbers are more eye catching and 7 is my favourite number so I threw in an extra seven. 😀
I hope you enjoyed reading these 17 basketball facts. Should I have added more? Less? Shoot me a message and let me know.