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The Olympic Events-Basketball
Basketball at the Olympics
This is a typical all -American sport- there is little emphasis on defence ,with just constant attacking and scoring.One of the fastest an most entertaining indoor games, basketball was introduced as an Olympic sport in 1936, with the women's game coming 4O years later.
America is the home of basketball and will always be favourites for both the men's and women's events.
Basketball was devised by Dr James Nasmith, a YMCA training instructor at Springfeild ,Massachusettes.He wanted a vigorous indoor game to keep his students fit during the winter break between the baseball and American football seasons. Simple rules were drawn up and he nailed a couple of peach baskets to the gym walls. One of his pupils called it Basketball and the name has remained ever since.
A basket is worth 1-3 points .A goal from open play is worth 2 points, if a shot is made from outside the marked semi-circle,3 points are scored.Free throws for various offences are worth 1 point,the end to end play makes for very high scoring games.
The matches are played over four quarters with the clock stopped for time outs and foul plays as well as subs, ensuring a constant end to end action in the land of the giants!
USA-Most Triumphant Basketball Team
The USA have dominated the men's basketball at the Olympics with 13 gold medals from 16 visits to the Olympiad.Their first defeat in the competition came from a controversial defeat by the USSR in the 1972 Munich Olympics.
With the advent of professional players to the Olympic sport. the USA basketball team could only manage a bronze in the 2004 Athens Olympics. The pros lost three games at this event compared to only two defeats for their entire Olympic participation prior to the Greek games.
Since the introduction of Women's basketball at Montreal in 1976,the USA basketball team have won six gold medals from eight with their most recent failure coming at the 1992 Barcelona games where they were beaten by the Unified Team.
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London 2012 will see the British men's basket ball team competing for the second time , their previous appearance was at the London games in 1948 where they did actually manage to win a game defeating Ireland, but finished in 20th position.
The Great Britain team will be guaranteed a higher finish this time as 12 teams will battle it out in two pools of 6, with the best eight contesting the knockout stages which will be held at the O2 Arena But don't expect GB to be contesting the medal places.