We just recently watched one of the most exciting NBA seasons come to an end. The Black Mamba retired, and the Golden State Warriors finished on top with a historic record of 73-9, breaking the previous 72-10 record of exactly twenty years ago, set by my Chicago Bulls during the 1995-96 season. For some sentimental reason, I did not want the record to be broken. I wanted the Bulls to keep it for how much I enjoyed those seasons in the 90’s. But that’s why the game of Basketball is so exciting, and records, like Michael Jordan stated, are meant to be broken.
I have always enjoyed the Warriors since the Chris Webber, Tim Hardaway, Latrell Sprewell and Chris Mullin days. This Golden State team, led by Stephen Curry, has been surprisingly superior during the past two seasons, eclipsing the big three of Lebron James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love in Cleveland. My hat’s off to the Golden State Warriors and the coach of the year Steve Kerr.
Where and how did the game of Basketball begin?
James Naismith, a Canadian-American physical educator and doctor in medicine, invented the game of Basketball in 1891 at Springfield YMCA in Massachusetts, USA.
He was trying to create a game that did not take much space indoors to keep athletes in shape during the harsh winters of New England. In his 13 famous rules of “Basket Ball”, he followed three main thoughts about this new game: Safety, safety and safety.
- First, by comparing the balls of other popular sports of the time: baseball, soccer, football, rugby, lacrosse and hockey, he concluded that the soft soccer ball was the safest; so he chose a similar type of ball for the game of Basketball.
- Second, he noticed that the most physical contact in these other sports occurred while running, dribbling, or hitting the ball. Then, for the safety of the players, he decided that the only legal option was to pass the ball. There was no dribbling in the initial rules of the game. It was introduced to the game later in 1897.
- And third, in an effort to avoid injuries and further reduce body contact, he placed the goal 10 feet high, making shooting one of the most important fundamentals in this new game baptized by Naismith as “Basket Ball”.
The game of Basketball continues to evolve over time. And despite being drafted from the idea of “safety” for its players, we know that many injuries are suffered every year from the competitiveness and toughness of the game.
Dr. James Naismith became the first Basketball head coach of the University of Kansas in 1898. They played nearby YMCA teams. The new game of Basketball started climbing the popularity ladder and it is now played in every corner of the world.
Today, FIBA (Fédération Internationale de Basket-ball from its French name), it’s the association of national Basketball organizations, which governs international competition in Basketball. It was founded in 1932 in Geneva, Switzerland after the game was officially recognized by the International Olympic Committee.
The Naismith Trophy is an award given to the men’s champion of the FIBA Basketball World Cup.
Let’s continue to enjoy the drama of the NBA playoffs in the following weeks. In the Western Conference, I can’t wait for the Golden State Warriors vs. the San Antonio Spurs series. But first they need to deal with the Portland Trail Blazers and the improving Oklahoma City Thunder respectively. In the Eastern Conference, the Cleveland Cavaliers will have a legitimate test with the Atlanta Hawks. I believe the Charlotte Hornets will meet the Toronto Raptors in the semis.
I really symphatize with the San Antonio Spurs and their playing style, but I think this is a Golden Season and the title will be, for the second season in a row, for the Warriors.
Who knows, I may be wrong. Which team do you think could beat the Warriors?