The National Basketball Association, or the NBA, is the official men’s professional basketball league of North America. Some people consider it to be the best professional basketball league in the world, and its games certainly receive far more media coverage than those of many other basketball leagues. American basketball fans are some of the most spirited in the world, so it isn’t surprising that the NBA is able to pull in the funding that it needs to support its roster of teams.
The NBA itself dates back to June 6, 1946. At the time, it was called the Basketball Association of America. The name National Basketball Association was adopted in the year 1949 after the Basketball Association of America had a successful merge with the National Basketball League. Indeed, there could have been a successful NBL today otherwise.
There are currently thirty teams associated with the NBA, and all thirty of them have their own passionate supporters. Interestingly enough, although the National Basketball Association seems to be an American association through implication and because the overwhelming majority of its teams are American, it does have one Canadian team. As a result, it is still a North American association.
The fact that the NBA still has a Canadian team is appropriate. To a certain extent, modern basketball could be regarded as a Canadian invention. Basketball was first invented in 1891 by James Naismith, who was a Canadian physical education teacher. It will interest some basketball fans to know that he specifically created this game because basketball was less likely to lead to injuries than football.
To this day, even though the sport has changed a great deal since those days, basketball players are still less likely to suffer disabling injuries than professional football players. Still, this humble physical education teacher would probably be shocked to learn what happened to this little sports game over a century later. Basketball is still an alternative to American football in the minds of some people, but other people are just fans of American sports in general and take the good with the bad.
In the original version of basketball, the basket was literally a basket. People had to remove the ball from the basket every single time a point was scored. Suffice to say, this was not an efficient development, and today the ball goes through a trademark hoop covered with netting. The modern basketball hoop is something of an artifact, however, and it is still debatable as to whether or not the netting around the hoop is really necessary.
The Basketball Fans of Today
Basketball fans are going to argue which of the thirty teams in the NBA are the best. This is a tough question to answer in so much as it is even possible to answer. The composition of all professional sports teams changes. A team that can be great in one decade can falter in another. There are some teams that consistently lose and some teams that seem to be always on top, and this seems to be consistent across most sports leagues.
Certain teams become popular enough that even many people in the mainstream have heard of them, regardless of whether or not they follow basketball. The Chicago Bulls fall into that category. Even people who have never heard of basketball know about some of the most famous Chicago Bulls players, such as Michael Jordan. Indeed, Michael Jordan helped give the Chicago Bulls some of their absolute best years. The Chicago Bulls were such a tremendous force to be reckoned with in the 1990’s that the fans and the non-fans alike went wild.
The Chicago Bulls benefits from having one of the catchiest theme songs in the NBA, which fans get to hear every single team the players are called out in the game and which has a techno sound to it. The aggressive red, white, and black Chicago Bull symbol, featuring a defiant and glowering bull, lends itself better to fan t-shirts than many of the other symbols in the NBA. Fans will paint themselves red, white, and black in order to support the Bulls and they will use all the symbolism that they can to support the team.
The Boston Celtics and the Los Angeles Lakers have also managed to become some of the most respected teams in the NBA. People will support these teams in similar ways. They’ll wear Lakers or Celtics t-shirts to their games. They’ll paint their faces to support the team if they’re really enthusiastic. Some people will dress up as the team mascots. Lots of fans will devise their own chants in order to support all of their favorite teams.
Generally speaking, team sports are all about geography in every way. People will tend to support the home team. People from Boston tend to root for the Celtics, even if they’re not having their best season. People from Chicago root for the Bulls. People from Los Angeles root for the Lakers. However, there are exceptions. Some people will simply support these three teams on the basis of their positive reputation alone.
Music has been a big part of American sports for a long time. Spectacle is an important part of these matches. The NBA has often featured hip hop music in recent years, and it now features some country music as well. Roundball Rock is still the official song of the NBA, if it has one. Big Things Will Happen seems to be the tagline of the NBA. This is a reference to the fact that the world of professional sports in the United States has often embodied certain American values, such as optimism and the reverence for hard work.
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I Love This Game was the former and somewhat prosaic promotional phrase of the NBA before 2007, and Where Amazing Happens was the promotional phrase until 2012. Many people would say that Big Things Will Happen seems to better reflect the sentiments of the fans, not to mention the culture surrounding the NBA and the fans who love it.