The NBA Finals is the championship series of the National Basketball Association. The Eastern and Western conference champions play a best-of-seven game series to determine the league champion; the winners of the Finals are awarded the Larry O'Brien Championship Trophy, which replaced the Walter A. Brown Trophy in 1983; the series was known as the BAA Finals prior to the 1949–50 season when the Basketball Association of America merged with the National Basketball League to form the NBA. The competition oversaw further name changes to NBA World Championship Series from 1950 to 1985, as well as a brief stint as the Showdown, before settling on NBA Finals in 1986; the NBA Finals was structured to harbor a 2-2-1-1-1 format. In 1985, it was changed to a 2–3–2 format to ease the amount of cross country travel until 2013, where the first two and last two games of the series were played at the arena of the team who earned home-court advantage by having the better record during the regular season. In 2014, the 2–2–1–1–1 format was restored.
The first two are played at home for the higher-seeded team, the following two at the home of the lower-seeded team. The following three are played at each team's home arena alternately. A total of 18 franchises have won the NBA Finals, with the Golden State Warriors the current champion; the Boston Celtics hold the record for the most victories, having won the competition 17 times, as well as winning the competition the most times in a row, winning it eight times from 1959 to 1966. The Los Angeles Lakers have contested the NBA Finals the most times, with 31 appearances; the Eastern Conference has provided the most champions, with 38 wins from ten franchises. The Boston Celtics went 11–1 in the NBA Finals during 13 seasons, they won eight straight NBA championships from 1959 through 1966. This period marks the largest stretch of seasons that a single team made up over 65% of Finals appearances, includes the only time the NBA Finals was decided in double overtime. With the establishment of the Celtics dynasty in 1957 spearheaded by center Bill Russell, the team saw great success, only encountering difficulty when up against teams led by Wilt Chamberlain.
However, for most of the late 1950s and 1960s, the Celtics and Russell managed to have an upper hand on Chamberlain's teams. In 1964, who had moved to the state of California alongside his team, led the San Francisco Warriors to a Western Conference championship, but again failed to conquer the Celtics; the following season, he returned to the Eastern Conference to join the Philadelphia 76ers, who were the former Syracuse Nationals that had relocated to the city to cover the vacancy created with the departure of the Warriors. The first clash between the two stars in the playoffs was in 1966, with Boston winning the series 4–1. In the following season, Philadelphia coach Alex Hannum instructed Chamberlain to provide an increased focus on playing a team game, to avoid drawing the double-teams that troubled Chamberlain during the Finals; this tactical change brought the team to a new record of 68 wins the following season, as well as defeating the Celtics before winning the Finals. In 1968, Boston overcame a 3–1 deficit against Philadelphia to once again arrive in the Finals.
They went on to defeat the Los Angeles Lakers in the Finals to again become NBA Champions. In 1969, the Celtics faced great difficulty entering the postseason, as they had an aging team and multiple injuries to a number of players, they qualified for the playoffs as the fourth and final seed in the East, while the Lakers, who had added Chamberlain in the offseason to join stars Jerry West and Elgin Baylor. The Lakers won the West and were prohibitive favorites to become Champions for the first time since relocating to Los Angeles. Despite holding a 2-1 advantage going into Game 4, the Lakers led 87–86 and had the ball with 10 seconds to play, but after a turnover, Sam Jones scored tying the series. The series was tied 3-3 going into Game 7 in Los Angeles, with Lakers owner Jack Cooke hanging balloons in the arena in anticipation of a Lakers victory. West picked up injuries to his thigh and hamstring during the series, returned to play for the final game. Russell utilized this newly lacking mobility in West to organize fast breaks at every opportunity for the Celtics, which allowed them to gain an early lead.
They held off a furious Lakers comeback to win 108–106 and win the series, win their eleventh championship in 13 years. As many stars either declined or retired following this win, it is recognized as the last NBA Finals conducted by the Celtics dynasty; the 1970s saw. In 1970, a classic final featured the Knicks against the Lakers. In the waning moments of Game 3, with the series tied, Jerry West hit a basket from 60 feet to tie the game, a shot which became one of the most famous ever. However, the Knicks won in overtime and continued their momentum for a 4–3 win, becoming the first team after the Celtics dynasty to win an NBA championship; the Milwaukee Bucks won their first franchise title, defeating the Baltimore Bullets in 1971. Two seasons after losing in the Finals, the Lakers got a measure of revenge by winning 33 straight games, the longest such streak in NBA history. By season's end, they broke the record for most wins in a season with 69, one more than the 1966–67 Philadelphia 76ers, before taking home the championship for the first time since relocating to Los Angeles.
The Knicks returned to win the championship round again a season to record their second victorious season. Despite the rise of the Knicks, the
Reginald Harding was an American professional basketball player. Drafted in 1962 by the Detroit Pistons, Harding is noted as the first player drafted into the NBA without having played in college, Harding spent five years in the NBA. Harding played for the Trenton Colonials, a part of the Continental Basketball Association. A native of Detroit, Michigan and a 1961 graduate of Eastern High School, Harding, a 7'0" center, was selected by the Detroit Pistons in the fourth round of the 1962 NBA Draft and in the six round of the 1963 draft after playing for a year with the Holland Oilers of the Midwest Professional Basketball League. Harding first played for the Pistons during the 1963–64 season. In four seasons with the Pistons and Chicago Bulls, Harding averaged 9.0 points and 9.1 rebounds per game, spent part of 1967–68 with the ABA's Indiana Pacers, averaging 13.4 points and 13.4 rebounds in 25 games. Harding's basketball career was cut short by a number of personal problems. Harding spent time in jail struggled with drug addictions, was rumored to carry a pistol in his gym bag.
During a television interview, Harding threatened to shoot the Indiana Pacers' general manager, Mike Storen. Harding reportedly threatened to shoot teammate Jimmy Rayl while the two were rooming together. According to Peter Benjaminson's The Lost Supreme: The Life of Dreamgirl Florence Ballard, Harding raped Florence Ballard, a member of The Supremes, at knifepoint in 1960. Harding was shot dead at a Detroit intersection in 1972, aged 30. NBA high school draftees Stats at Basketball-Reference Stats at BasketballReference The Draft Review profile Where have you gone, Reggie Harding?.
NBA high school draftees
The NBA high school draftees are players who have been drafted to the National Basketball Association straight out of high school without playing basketball at the collegiate level. The process of jumping directly from high school to the professional level is known as going prep-to-pro. Since 2006, the practice of drafting high school players has been prohibited by the new collective bargaining agreement, which requires that players who entered the draft be 19 years of age and at least one year removed from high school. Contrary to popular belief, the player does not have to play at least a year in college basketball: the player can choose to instead play in another professional league like Brandon Jennings or Emmanuel Mudiay in Italy and China respectively; the NBA has long had a preference for players. However, there have been numerous notable players who attended high school in the United States and joined the NBA without playing college basketball. In the early years of the NBA draft, a player had to finish his four-year college eligibility to be eligible for selection.
Reggie Harding, who had graduated from high school but did not enroll in a college, became the first player drafted out of high school when the Detroit Pistons selected him in the fourth round of the 1962 draft. However, the NBA rules at that time prohibited a high school player to play in the league until one year after his high school class graduated. Thus, he spent a year playing in a minor basketball league before he was drafted again in the 1963 draft by the Pistons, he entered the league in the 1963–64 season and played four seasons in the NBA and American Basketball Association. In 1971, the U. S. Supreme Court decision Haywood v. National Basketball Association ruled 7–2 against the NBA's requirement that a player must wait four years after high school graduation before turning professional; this ruling allowed players to enter the NBA Draft without four years of college, provided they could give evidence of hardship to the NBA office. In 1974, the NBA's rival, the ABA, drafted high school star Moses Malone.
He was signed by the Utah Stars and became the first player to go directly from high school basketball to a professional league. He became an instant success, averaging 14 rebounds per game in his rookie season, he played in the ABA until the ABA–NBA merger in 1976. He played 19 successful seasons with 7 NBA teams, he won the NBA championship, along with the Finals Most Valuable Player Award, with the Philadelphia 76ers in 1983. His other achievements include 3 Most Valuable Player Awards, 12 consecutive All-Star Game selections, 8 All-NBA Team selections and 6 rebounding titles, he has been inducted to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and was named in the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History list announced at the league's 50th anniversary in 1996. A year two high school players, Darryl Dawkins and Bill Willoughby, applied for hardship and were declared eligible to be selected in the 1975 draft, they had applied and gave evidence of financial hardship to the league, which granted them the right to start earning a living by starting their professional careers earlier.
Dawkins was selected 5th by the Philadelphia 76ers while Willoughby was selected 19th by the Atlanta Hawks. Dawkins averaged 12 points and 6 rebounds per game. Willoughby averaged only 6 points per game. Neither player reached the level of success, expected, it is argued that they could have been better players if they had college basketball experience before entering the NBA. After Dawkins and Willoughby, no high schoolers were drafted for 14 years, though several players entered the league without playing college basketball. One player, Shawn Kemp, never played any games due to personal problems. In 1989, a year after his high school graduation, he was drafted by the Seattle SuperSonics, he was selected to 6 All-Star Games and 3 All-NBA Teams. In 1995, Kevin Garnett, USA Today's high school basketball player of the year, announced his intentions to forgo college, declared himself eligible for the 1995 NBA draft; the move was controversial. On draft day, Garnett was selected with the #5 pick in the first round by the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Garnett led the Timberwolves to eight consecutive playoff berths and was a multiple All-Star during his time with the team. In 2004, the Wolves advanced to the Western Conference Finals before losing to the Lakers. After a trade in the 2007 offseason to the Boston Celtics, he was a core player in the Celtics' first NBA title in over 20 years. In 1996, two notable players made the jump from high school to the NBA; the first was Kobe Bryant, selected by the Charlotte Hornets with the 13th pick of the NBA draft, but traded immediately to the Los Angeles Lakers. The second was Jermaine O'Neal, selected by the Trail Blazers with the 17th pick. O'Neal was traded in 2000 to the Indiana Pacers. In 1997, another All-Star caliber player, Tracy McGrady, was selected by the Toronto Raptors. In 1998, three high-schoolers were drafted with Al Ha
Amateur Athletic Union
The Amateur Athletic Union is an amateur sports organization based in the United States. A multi-sport organization, the AAU is dedicated to the promotion and development of amateur sports and physical fitness programs, it has more than 700,000 members nationwide, including more than 100,000 volunteers. The AAU was founded on January 21, 1888, by James E. Sullivan with the goal of creating common standards in amateur sport. Since most national championships for youth athletes in the United States have taken place under AAU leadership. From its founding as a publicly supported organization, the AAU has represented US sports within the various international sports federations; the AAU worked with the United States Olympic Committee to prepare U. S. athletes for the Olympic Games. As part of this, the AAU Junior Olympic Games were introduced in 1949, with athletes aged 8 to 16 years, or older in certain sports, can participating. Many future World and Olympic champions have appeared in these events, which are still held every year.
In the 1970s, the AAU received growing criticism. Many claimed. Women were banned from participating in certain competitions and some runners were locked out. There were problems with sporting goods that did not meet the standards of the AAU. During this time, the Olympic Sports Act of 1978 organized the United States Olympic Committee and saw the re-establishment of independent associations for the Olympic sports, referred to as national governing bodies; the rise of professionalism in all sports in the latter half of the 20th century hurt the AAU's viability. As a result, the AAU lost its influence and importance in international sports, focused on the support and promotion of predominantly youthful athletes, as well as on the organization of national sports events; the AAU was founded in 1888 by William Buckingham Curtis to establish standards and uniformity in amateur sport. During its early years the AAU served as a leader in international sport representing the United States in the international sports federations.
The AAU worked with the Olympic movement to prepare athletes for the Olympic Games. After the Amateur Sports Act of 1978 broke up the AAU's responsibility as the national Olympic sports governing body, the AAU focused on providing sports programs for all participants of all ages beginning at the local and regional levels; the philosophy of the AAU is "Sports for All, Forever." In 1923 the AAU sponsored the First American Field championships for women. The AAU is divided into 56 distinct district associations, which annually sanction 34 sports programs, 250 national championships, over 30,000 age division events; the AAU events have over 50,000 volunteers. The Amateur Sports Act of 1978 was precipitated by grumblings of the inefficiency of the AAU to manage the multitude of sports at the Olympic level. USA Gymnastics was formed as a feeder program in 1963 as a response to perceived poor performance by the American performers in the Olympics and at World Championships; the USWF was formed in 1968 as an effort to take wrestling as an independent governing body.
Their position was supported when FILA the world governing body refused to accept membership of "umbrella" sports organizations like the AAU. After years of grumbling by athletes, the International Track Association was formed after the 1972 Olympics to provide track and field athletes an opportunity to make money from their sporting efforts. Participants in the professional league were "banned for life" from the Olympics and their record-breaking performances were never accepted. In the early 1970s, The AAU became the subject of criticism, notably by outspoken track star Steve Prefontaine, over the living conditions for amateur athletes under the AAU, as well as arbitrary rules. Congress adopted the Amateur Sports Act of 1978 in response to such criticisms removing the organization from any governance role; the AAU now continues as a voluntary organization promoting youth sports. In 2008, The AAU found itself under scrutiny over the privacy of information of athletes. A local news station near the AAU Headquarters found boxes of personal information thrown out in dumpsters, raising questions about the organization's handling of private data.
In 2015, Kobe Bryant criticized the AAU, describing it as "Horrible, terrible AAU basketball. It's stupid, it doesn't teach our kids how to play the game at all so you wind up having players that are big and they bring it up and they do all this fancy crap and they don't know how to post. They don't know the fundamentals of the game. It's stupid." Kobe, who moved to Italy at age 6 because of his father playing basketball there, stated that the AAU has been "treating like cash cows for everyone to profit off of". Steve Kerr has spoken out against the AAU, stating that the AAU's structure devalues winning, with many teams playing about as many as four times a day and some players changing teams as early as from one morning to an afternoon the same day. Kerr states that "The process of growing as a team basketball player — learning how to become part of a whole, how to fit into something bigger than oneself — becomes lost within the AAU fabric."In the wake of sexual scandals that hit two U. S. universities, Penn State and Syracuse, involving acts of sexual abuse with children, charges have reached the AAU in Memphis, through the alleged misconduct of President Robert W.
"Bobby" Dodd. In 2016, the AAU was sued for allowing Rick Butler, a youth volleyball coach accused of sexually abusing his players in the past, coach an under-18 team in the AAU Girls' Junior National Volleyball
NBA territorial pick
A territorial pick was a type of special draft choice used in the Basketball Association of America draft in 1949 and in the National Basketball Association draft after the 1950 season, the year in which the BAA was renamed the NBA. In the draft, NBA teams took turns selecting amateur U. S. college basketball players. Territorial picks were eliminated when the draft system was revamped in 1966. In the first 20 years of the BAA/NBA, the league was still trying to gain the support of fans who lived in or near the teams' home markets. To achieve this, the league introduced the territorial pick rule to help teams acquire popular players from colleges in their area who would have strong local support. Before the draft, a team could forfeit its first-round draft pick and select any player from within a 50-mile radius of its home arena. Although the territorial picks were selected before the draft, these picks were not factored into the overall selection count of the draft. Of the 23 territorial picks, 12 players have been inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
Tom Heinsohn, Wilt Chamberlain, Oscar Robertson and Jerry Lucas are the only four territorial picks who won the Rookie of the Year Award. Chamberlain won the Most Valuable Player Award in his rookie season, he went on to win the Most Valuable Player Award three more times in his career. Oscar Robertson is the only other territorial pick; the Philadelphia Warriors had the most territorial picks, having selected six who attended a total of five colleges. The University of Cincinnati had the most players taken as a territorial pick; the 1965 NBA draft, the last draft in which the rule remained in effect, had the most territorial picks in a single draft with three. The 1953 draft had three territorial picks. No territorial pick was selected in the 1957 and 1961 drafts. KHL territorial pick NBA.com: NBA Draft History
Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame
The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame is an American history museum and hall of fame, located at 1000 Hall of Fame Avenue in Springfield, Massachusetts. It serves as the sport's most complete library, in addition to promoting and preserving the history of basketball. Dedicated to Canadian-American physician and inventor of the sport James Naismith, it was opened and inducted its first class in 1959; as of the induction of the Class of 2018, the Hall has formally inducted 389 individuals. The Naismith Hall of Fame was established in 1959 by Lee Williams, a former athletic director at Colby College. In the 1960s, the Basketball Hall of Fame struggled to raise enough money for the construction of its first facility. However, during the following half-decade the necessary amount was raised, the building opened on Feb. 17, 1968, less than one month after the National Basketball Association played its 18th All-Star Game. The Basketball Hall of Fame's Board named four inductees in its first year.
In addition to honoring those who contributed to basketball, the Hall of Fame sought to make contributions of its own. In 1979, the Hall of Fame sponsored a pre-season college basketball exhibition; this Tip-Off Classic has been the start to the college basketball season since, although it does not always take place in Springfield, Massachusetts it returns every few years. In the 17 years that the original Basketball Hall of Fame operated at Springfield College, it drew more than 630,000 visitors; the popularity of the Basketball Hall of Fame necessitated that a new facility be constructed, in 1985, an $11 million facility was built beside the scenic Connecticut River in Springfield. As the new hall opened, it recognized women for the first time, with inductees such as Senda Berenson Abbott, who first introduced basketball to women at Smith College. During the years following its construction, the Basketball Hall of Fame's second facility drew far more visitors than anticipated, due in large part to the increasing popularity of the game but to the scenic location beside the river and the second Hall's interesting modern architecture.
In 2002, the Basketball Hall of Fame moved again—albeit 100 yards south along Springfield's riverfront—into a $47 million facility designed by renowned architects Gwathmey Siegel & Associates. The building's architecture features a metallic silver, basketball-shaped sphere flanked by two symmetrical rhombuses; the dome is illuminated at night and features 80,000 square foot, including numerous restaurants and an extensive gift shop. The second Basketball Hall of Fame was not torn down but rather converted into an LA Fitness health clubs; the current Basketball Hall of Fame features Center Court, a full-sized basketball court on which visitors can play. Inside the building there are a game gallery, many interactive exhibits, several theaters, an honor ring of inductees. A large theater for ceremonies seats up to 300; the honorees inducted in 2002 included the Harlem Globetrotters and Magic Johnson, a five-time NBA champion, three-time NBA finals MVP and Olympic gold medalist. As of 2011, the current Basketball Hall of Fame has exceeded attendance expectations, with basketball fans traveling to the Hall of Fame from all over the world.
Despite the new facility's success, a logistical problem remains for the Basketball Hall of Fame and the City of Springfield. The two entities are separated by the Interstate 91 elevated highway—one of the eastern United States' busiest highways—which inhibits foot-traffic and other interaction between the Basketball Hall of Fame and Springfield's lively Metro Center. Both the Hall and Springfield have made public statements about cooperating further so as to facilitate more business and recreational growth for both. Urban planners at universities such as UMass Amherst have called for the I-91 to be moved, or to be re-configured so as to be pedestrian-friendly to Hall of Fame visitors. In 2010, the Urban Land Institute announced a plan to make the walk between Springfield's Metro Center and the Hall of Fame easier. In contrast to the Pro Football and the National Baseball Halls of Fame, Springfield honors international and American professionals, as well as American and international amateurs, making it arguably the most comprehensive Hall of Fame among major sports.
From 2011 to 2015 seven committees were, as of 2016 six committees are employed to both screen and elect candidates. Four of the committees screen prospective candidates: North American Screening Committee Women's Screening Committee International Screening Committee Veterans Screening Committee, with "Veterans" defined as individuals whose careers ended at least 35 years before they are considered for election. Since 2011, the Veterans and International Committees vote to directly induct one candidate for each induction class. Three committees were formed in 2011 to directly elect one candidate for each induction class: American Basketball Association Committee - This committee was permanently disbanded in 2015 because it had fulfilled its purpose over the previous five years. Contributor Direct Election Committee Other committees may choose to elect contributors. For example, the 2014 class included two contributors. Early African-American Pioneers of the Game CommitteeIndividuals who receive at least seven votes from the North American Screening Committee or five votes from one of the other screening committees in a given year are eligible to advance to an Honors Committee, composed of 12 members plus rotating groups of 12 specialists (one group for
College basketball today is governed by collegiate athletic bodies including the United States's National Collegiate Athletic Association, the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics, the United States Collegiate Athletic Association, the National Junior College Athletic Association, the National Christian College Athletic Association. Governing bodies in Canada include the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association; each of these various organizations are subdivided into from one to three divisions based on the number and level of scholarships that may be provided to the athletes. Each organization has different conferences to divide up the teams into groups. Teams are selected into these conferences depending on the location of the schools; these conferences are put in due to the regional play of the teams and to have a structural schedule for each to team to play for the upcoming year. During conference play the teams are ranked not only through the entire NCAA, but the conference as well in which they have tournament play leading into the NCAA tournament.
The history of basketball can be traced back to a YMCA International Training School, known today as Springfield College, located in Springfield, Massachusetts. The sport was created by a physical education teacher named James Naismith, who in the winter of 1891 was given the task of creating a game that would keep track athletes in shape and that would prevent them from getting hurt; the date of the first formal basketball game played at the Springfield YMCA Training School under Naismith's rules is given as December 21, 1891. Basketball began to be played at some college campuses by 1893; the first known college to field a basketball team against an outside opponent was Vanderbilt University, which played against the local YMCA in Nashville, Tennessee, on February 7, 1893. The second recorded instance of an organized college basketball game was Geneva College's game against the New Brighton YMCA on April 8, 1893, in Beaver Falls, which Geneva won 3–0; the first recorded game between two college teams occurred on February 9, 1895, when Hamline University faced Minnesota A&M. Minnesota A&M won the game, played under rules allowing nine players per side, 9–3.
The first intercollegiate match using the modern rule of five players per side is credited as a game between the University of Chicago and the University of Iowa, in Iowa City, Iowa, on January 18, 1896. The Chicago team won the game 15-12, under the coaching of Amos Alonzo Stagg, who had learned the game from James Naismith at the Springfield YMCA. However, some sources state the first "true" five-on-five intercollegiate match was a game in 1897 between Yale and Penn, because although the Iowa team that played Chicago in 1896 was composed of University of Iowa students, it did not represent the university, rather it was organized through a YMCA. By 1900, the game of basketball had spread to colleges across the country; the Amateur Athletic Union's annual U. S. national championship tournament featured collegiate teams playing against non-college teams. Four colleges won the AAU tournament championship: NYU, Butler and Washburn. College teams were runners-up in 1915, 1917, 1920, 1921, 1932 and 1934.
The first known tournament featuring college teams was the 1904 Summer Olympics, where basketball was a demonstration sport, a collegiate championship tournament was held. The Olympic title was won by Hiram College. In March 1908, a two-game "championship series" was organized between the University of Chicago and Penn, with games played in Philadelphia and Bartlett, Illinois. Chicago swept both games to win the series. In March 1922, the 1922 National Intercollegiate Basketball Tournament was held in Indianapolis – the first stand-alone post-season tournament for college teams; the champions of six major conferences participated: Pacific Coast Conference, Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association, Western Pennsylvania League, Illinois Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association and Indiana Intercollegiate Athletic Association. The Western Conference and Eastern Intercollegiate League declined invitations to participate. Wabash College won the 1922 tournament.
The first organization to tout a occurring national collegiate championship was the NAIA in 1937, although it was surpassed in prestige by the National Invitation Tournament, or NIT, which brought six teams to New York's Madison Square Garden in the spring of 1938. Temple defeated Colorado in the first NIT tournament championship game, 60–36. In 1939, another national tournament was implemented by the National Collegiate Athletic Association; the location of the NCAA Tournament varied from year to year, it soon used multiple locations each year, so more fans could see games without traveling to New York. Although the NIT was created earlier and was more prestigious than the NCAA for many years, it lost popularity and status to the NCAA Tournament. In 1950, following a double win by the 1949–50 CCNY Beavers men's basketball team, the NCAA ruled that no team could compete in both tournaments, indicated that a team eligible for the NCAA tournament should play in it. Not long afterward, assisted by the 1951 scandals based in New York City, the NCAA tournament had become more prestigious than before, with conference champions and the majority of top-ranked teams competing there.
The NCAA tournament overtook the NIT by 1960. Through the 1960s and 1970s, with UCLA leading the way as winner