Basketball is the third most popular sport in the world, and it’s no secret that it has some dedicated fans. With that said, even the most hardcore fans may not know some surprising facts about this popular sport. 

This guide is here to give you five interesting basketball facts that you’ll love. Try and test your knowledge.

Ready to learn more? Let’s get started.

1. Basketball Used to Use a Soccer Ball

Could you imagine trying to shoot a basket with a soccer ball? Well, that was initially the case when basketball first started.

Referees had to get the ball from the baskets every time a player would score. In 1900, the string basket that is common today was introduced to the game. Backboards were attached to the baskets; later on, this helped prevent spectators from blocking players’ shots. 

2. James Naismith Invented Basketball

Anyone who knows the history of basketball might be familiar with this fun fact.

In 1891, a man named James Naismith was asked by his boss to invent an indoor winter activity at a YMCA in Springfield, Massachusetts. Jesse is known as the founder of basketball. He was a physical education teacher and also wrote the original basketball rule book.

If that wasn’t impressive enough, he also founded the University of Kansas basketball program.

3. It Was a Rougher Sport

As you could imagine, the rules for basketball were a lot different than they are now. This made it a rougher sport than we know today. For example, when the ball got out of bounds, the referee tossed it into the court, and the team that first had their hands on the ball got possession.

This led to players racing towards the ball to get their chance, which ended with players scurrying inside the court and getting injured. The rule changed in 1923 to make the game safer for everyone. 

4. Michael Jordan Paid Shoe Fines

If you associate Michael Jordan with his legendary Air Jordans, we don’t blame you. These shoes made record sales numbers and are a significant influence on the streetwear we know today

What you may not know is that these shoes used to be against the NBA dress code. Michael Jordan paid a fine every time he wore them. This professional basketball player loved the shoes so much that he would rather pay the fine than play without them. 

Eventually, the NBA allowed the shoes on the court.

5. Dribbling Wasn’t Allowed 

Another thing that wasn’t allowed in the initial basketball games? Dribbling. When a player caught the ball, they had to throw it to another player to keep the game moving.

In 1897,  dribbling was introduced to the game by a college basketball team. However, the initial rules stated that players were only allowed to use one bounce to pass the ball to another player. 

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Interesting Basketball Facts

Whether you’re a hardcore basketball fan or recently started watching some games, it’s always fun to learn something new. These are some of the most interesting basketball facts around, and they might surprise you! Next time you’re watching the game, it might be a little difficult to pay attention to all this new knowledge.

Looking for more articles like this? Be sure to check out the sports section of our blog. 

About The Author

Daniel Quinn