The History of Basketball Basketball is one of the great sports that we play today. Dr. James Naismith is known as the world-wide inventor of basketball. He was born on November 6, 1861 in Almonte, Ontario, Canada. James was clergyman, educator, and physician. Later in his life he went on to be an instructor at the Young Men’s Christian Association (now Springfield College) in Springfield, Mass. He invented basketball in December of 1889 on request of Dr. Luther H. Gullick, that he organize a vigorous recreation suitable for indoor winter play.
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The game used elements of football, soccer, and hockey. The first ball used was a soccer ball. Teams had nine players, and the goals were wooden peach baskets attached to the walls. By 1897-98, teams of five became more standard. The game rapidly spread nationwide and to Canada, and other parts of the world, played both women and men basketball. It also became a popular informal outdoor game. U. S. servicemen in World War II popularized the sport in many other countries. Many colleges adopted the game between 1893-1895.
In 1934 colleges were staged in New York City’s Madison Square Garden for the first time. College basketball started to attract much interest. By the 1950’s it became a major college sport, thus moving the way for a new growth of interest in professional basketball. The first pro league was the national league formed in 1891. One of the greatest pro teams was the Original Celtics, organized about 1915 in New York City. They played 150 games and dominated basketball in the 1920’s.
The Harlem globetrotters an exhibition team, was founded in 1927 and achieved wide popularity for there amusing court behavior and ball handling. By the 1960’s pro teams from coast to coast, played before crowds of millions annually. Since the 1980’s the NBA has become one of the most popular sports organizations in the world because of the marketability of a number of high-profile star players, most notably Michael Jordan. Basketball has since been a major sport all around the world.