The History of The Basketball

The History of The Basketball

Basketball is an almost exclusively North American sport played at a professional level for the NBA. The game is nonetheless incredibly popular across the world, and millions tune in every year to watch the national basketball tournaments as they happen.The game itself is fairly straightforward, with two hoops on either side of the court, and two teams must try and work together and get the basketball into their opponent’s hoop to score points. Favoured by those that are on the taller side, basketball is a mixture of stamina, group work, and knowing when to strike.

But the iconic basketball, despite being similar to a football, is unique in the way its made and the materials used, and it has a long and interesting history that spans 200 years. Learning more about the basketball is a good way to get into the sport, especially for those getting into sports betting and online slots real money Canada.

Dr. James Naismith

Dr. James Naismith was the original inventor of the basketball in 1891, but the game didn’t gain any popularity until around three years later. The game in those days made use of regular soccer balls, which they threw into peach baskets that were hung at the ends of the court.

The First Ball

Naismith then contracted A.G. Spalding & Bros about coming up with a ball that was designed and specialised for his newly invented game in 1894. The company then responded with a leather ball that was held together with laces. It had a circumference of 32 inches, which is four times bigger than today’s conventional soccer ball.

Some years later, in 1948, the laces were removed, and the new construction was designed with a circumference of 30 inches, which became the official size of the ball in 1949. The design once again was changed, where the traditional four panels used changed to a total of eight, and the NBA adopted the new ball as their official ball design in 1970. The Spalding company also started supplying the NBA with their full-grain leather ball, which is still in use today, although other clubs and tournaments use their own designs and brands.

Today’s Basketball

Specialised basketballs have become fairly prominent in the basketball scene, with different size designs for different types of players. There are also now indoor and outdoor basketballs, and synthetic leather or rubberised materials have become extremely common among modern balls.

There have been some changes in later years to the official balls used in NBA tournaments. One such is the usage of polyurethane, which allows the cover of the ball to absorb moisture so that it doesn’t become slippery during a game. There have also been microfiber composite balls that have been adopted by the WNBA,  and is used in all official games. It’s a cheaper substitute for leather, and provides a more durable cover that lasts longer. Some even have integrated pumps systems that allow them to pump themselves up in case of a puncture.