Many people often wonder why the NBA has actually quarters and not halves choose college basketball. Or why the NBA supplies 12 minute quarters and also not 10 or 15 minutes prefer other professional sports leagues do.

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Why is a basketball quarter 12 minutes? The birth of the NBA has constantly seen four, twelve-minute quarters in your league. Acquisition the foundation of the basketball rules seen in college before the birth of the league, the NBA made decision that 12 minute soldier was the perfect lot of time because that a basketball game to last just over 2 hours. They established this to be the best amount that time for a paying spectator to enjoy a professional basketball game.

Not every leagues are created equal, you can say the NBA produced its own identity going versus the serial of how basketball games were claimed to be play at the time. Basketball was two halves the 15 come 20 minute of play. Let’s take it a additional look in ~ why the NBA take it this approach.

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A Brief background of Basketball and also Its Rules

When Dr. James Naismith designed the game of basketball in 1891 in Springfield Massachusetts, it to be to save his students the he to be training to save busy. The game was not perfect and also saw numerous rules alters through the years, however at the moment of his invention, he had to create rules to preserve order in the game. So he designed the 13 rules of basketball. The original 13 rule of basketball were together follows:


One the the original rules to be Naismith implemented two fifteen-minute halves per video game as you would check out in a college game. The college video game was original played this means but ultimately it was adjusted to 2 twenty-minute halves. Basketball would certainly evolve, players were getting much better and much more points were being scored, the adjust was needed.

Before the NBA to be founded, the nationwide Basketball association was recognized as the Basketball association of America in 1946. The birth of the organization took location in new York and would eventually readjust its surname to the NBA 3 years later on after merging through the American Basketball League.

The NBA has constantly used 12 minute quarters during games, and it is believed that this was the perfect amount of time for spectators and also basketball teams to walk head to head in compete play. During that time groups were playing 6o video game season.

The American Basketball association is also known together the ABA was started in 1967 and used the very same quarter length of 12 minutes together the NBA did. In 1976 the ABA would merge v the NBA. The rule of the NBA were very similar to the rules of the ABA so players didn’t have actually any daunting time adjusting.

Fun Fact: The ABA had already implemented a three-point heat in their league in i m sorry the NBA had actually not done so as of yet. As soon as the two leagues linked it was till 3 years later on in 1979 the NBA would introduce the line. It was the same distance as it was now 23 feet and also 9 inches but known together the 25 footer.

So why are Basketball Quarter’s exactly 12 minutes?

Originally once the organization was created with very small time to spare, the NBA took the college video game as the foundation of their rules. University basketball succeeded then and still is now. Although college basketball would relocate from 15-minute halves come 20-minutes which seemed to it is in a much much better format.

Quoted by the Why 12 Minute Quarters?


I think it’s vital to note that the NBA wanted to create its own identification of being a professional basketball league. For this reason what they discovered is a college game is too short for a paying spectator. They would certainly decide to produce 4 quarters rather of 2 halves at 12 minute apiece and found that this would offer the typical fan 2 hours to 2 and a fifty percent hours of watch time. For this reason fans could surely get their money worth.

Hypothetically make the soldier a minute longer or 3 minutes longer adds a far-ranging amount the time come the game. If us were to include 3 minutes making each 4 minutes 1 an also 15 minutes, we are looking in ~ an extra 12 minute of activity that virtually an extra quarter to every game. If we added the ceiling minimum of 1 minute extra each quarter making the 13 minute a quarter we space still looking at 4 extra minute a game which is almost equivalent to play overtime each game. Us all know how exhausted players get when the game goes right into overtime.

I really think the NBA should cut down top top the variety of games a team will certainly play in a season. 82 gamings is a many and an ext than ever players are obtaining injured at a higher rate. Players space stronger and an ext explosive than ever but an ext injuries as the result. Favor driving a automobile the more you drive the most likely you room to obtain into one accident.

Though as well as the gamings it practically feels favor the NBA nailed it v 12 minute a quarter, seems to be the perfect quantity of time come satisfying viewership and also minutes a player can withstand for peak performance.

The ABA when it come onto the step in 1967 adhered to the NBA’s, four 12 minute quarters. Imagery is the best kind of flattery. That is quite interesting that lock didn’t go a various route to different themself native the competition. Lock did have the three-point line which the NBA did no which attracted crowds to the ABA since of it.

Many human being often refer to a basketball quarter as a period. Yet most basketball fans refer to them together quarters because it’s obvious. It’s choose a Math trouble involving fractions, if us take a game and also it is broken down into 4 quarters, that’s a whole. If that is fifty percent time throughout the climate 2/4 the the game is done has actually been play or one half.


The proportion of Fouls come Minutes

In any kind of basketball league other than the NBA, friend will discover that if a player commits 5 fouls climate he/she is fouled out and also will need to sit the remainder that the game on the bench unable to return.

If you division 5 right into 40 minute of basketball video game time. A player will have actually a foul to offer for every 8 minute of video game time. FIBA, NCAA, and even part high college basketball says in the U.S.A. Operation on 10 minutes a 4 minutes 1 or 20-minute halves, totaling 40 minutes of game time. The exception of this proportion is that most high school might run 8 minute quarters.

The NBA rules for fouls space if a player commits 6 fouls they will certainly be fouled out and also have to sit the remainder the the game. If you divide 6 right into 48 minute you additionally get one foul for every 8 minutes of play. This is why the NBA upped their foul counting to 6 rather of 5 or else you would have a lot an ext players fouling out quite quickly.


Is the NBA the only organization with 12 minute quarters?

The NBA and the WNBA are the just leagues the govern four 12 minute quarters. Leagues favor high school and FIBA, have four quarters however are only 10 minutes each. The does seem together if FIBA will one day follow suit through the NBA. The Olympics and also World Cup that Basketball use FIBA rules and also their quarters space still 10 minutes during international play.

One point to store in mental is the if the NBA did walk to 10 minutes a video game the organization would endure a dramatic autumn in scoring. We’re talking 8 extra minutes of much less action, that’s almost a totality quarter.

You would also see much fewer players playing on the court. Coaches can easily obtain away v playing 7 come 8 players a video game with your superstars playing nearly the totality game. Many an ext games would certainly be near in nature also. The reverse would certainly be true in Europe or whereby they usage FIBA rules.

How lengthy are breaks between quarters?


Breaks between quarters 1 and 2 or 3 and also 4 space 130 seconds of remainder or just over 2 minutes, this also includes between the 4th quarter and also overtime. Halftime in the NBA is 15 minutes.


Breaks between quarters 1 and 2 or 3 and also 4 are 120 secs of remainder or 2 minutes, this likewise includes in between the fourth quarter and also overtime. Halftime in FIBA is 15 minutes.


The NCAA bring away a 15-minute break in between halves. There space no rests in between quarters because there space none.


Why are NBA games 4 quarters that twelve minutes instead of fifteen, like in the NFL?

The NFL operation fifteen-minute quarters however their gamings take a full of 3 hours. They have actually a different collection of players on offense and also defense which enables the players to pat this long. If football player were play both side of the field, this would be a different story and make because that a much shorter game.

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Because the NFL plays as soon as a main they can gain away with this format, and it works rather well because that the league. If the NBA switched come this format the game would operation the same length of three hours and also would make for to long a video game for basketball. Even when a NBA game goes right into overtime the complete time that the video game still does no reach 3 hours.