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[bas-kit-bawl, bah-skit-] /ˈbæs kɪtˌbɔl, ˈbɑ skɪt-/
a game played by two teams of usually five players each on a rectangular court having a raised basket or goal at each end, points being scored by tossing the ball through the opponent's basket.
the round, inflated ball, approximately 30 inches (76 cm) in circumference, used in this game.
Origin of basketball
1890-95, Americanism; basket + ball1
Related forms
probasketball, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for basketball
  • The sport thus becomes a fast-paced game of strategy and tactics not unlike basketball.
  • He enjoys playing sports and is on a travel basketball team.
  • If a basketball team is too expensive, buy a hockey team.
  • The ability to offer every sport from basketball to cycling used to be the sole domain of cable and satellite.
  • He slept through his high school basketball team's tournament and his senior prom.
  • basketball and a few playoff games are on tap for this weekend.
  • With first-year students starting on football and basketball teams in programs that allow.
  • Great basketball players, for example, generally need to be tall.
  • Favorite sports were football, baseball, and basketball.
  • Big-time college basketball is coming to an unfamiliar venue.
British Dictionary definitions for basketball


a game played by two opposing teams of five men (or six women) each, usually on an indoor court. Points are scored by throwing the ball through an elevated horizontal metal hoop
the inflated ball used in this game
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for basketball

1892, American English, from basket + ball (n.1). The game was invented 1891 by James A. Naismith (1861-1939), physical education instructor in Springfield, Massachusetts, U.S.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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