National Basketball Association
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National Basketball Association
The National Basketball Association, commonly referred to by the acronym “the NBA,” is the world’s top professional basketball organization. The NBA is the most well-known member of the USA Basketball (USAB) organization, which is identified by FIBA (translated in English as the International Basketball Federation) as the governing body for all things United States basketball.
Currently comprised of 30 teams, with 29 being in the United States of America and one in Canada, the NBA is one of the four top professional sports leagues in North America, alongside the National Football League, National Hockey League, and Major League Baseball. In the mid-1990’s, the league expanded to 30 teams, with two expansion franchises being placed in Canada; specifically, the Toronto Raptors and Vancouver Grizzlies. While the former franchise has flourished amidst the rabid sports scene in Canada (and thanks to a sustained influence of visible stars and overall team success), the Vancouver team eventually relocated back to the United States, currently playing in the city of Memphis.
The league adopted the official name of the National Basketball Association in 1949, after merging with a competing (and now defunct) league known as the National Basketball League. In the 1960’s, the league began to face competition from a newly-formed league known as the ABA, which began to lure some of the top basketball players into its own ranks. However, by the end of the decade, the ABA began to suffer from low attendance, poor TV ratings, and bad publicity thanks to a series of unfortunate off-the-court news from players. As a result, the ABA merged with the NBA, constituting the NBA league as we now know it today.
NBA Competition and Final Events
The championship series for the National Basketball Association is simply known as “The NBA Finals,” which pits the team that wins the league’s Eastern and Western conferences against each other, in a best of seven series. Eight teams from the Eastern and Western Conferences make their respective postseasons, and play in best-of-seven tournaments against each other, until a winning representative from each conference is established.
The Boston Celtics, one of the most dominant teams of the older eras of the NBA, have won 18 NBA championships. However, the Los Angeles Lakers are very close rivals, having one 17 titles themselves.
NBA Biggest News To Date
The Golden State Warriors, located in the greater San Francisco area in northern California, are currently trying to become the fifth team to reach the NBA Finals in four straight seasons. The others: 2011-14 Heat, 1984-87 Celtics, 1982-85 Lakers and 1957-66 Celtics. Of those four teams, only the 1957-66 Celtics won more than two titles during that run of four consecutive trips to the Finals.
The team they have constructed, to date, seems almost unprecedented, as they currently employ four of the league’s top 25 players. When those four players — Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green — are on the floor together, the team seems almost unstoppable. It would be an enormous upset if they don’t make it back to the NBA Finals, and enter the Finals as the prohibitive favorite.