History Of Television And The Nba

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Zachary Scanlon
Jerry Chandler
20 November 2015
COMM 201
The History of Television and the NBA
The National Basketball Association, or NBA has grown up over the last few decades. Once on the verge of collapse, and unwanted by television, the NBA has rebounded to become quite possibly the most popular league in the nation. It was through television that the league finally established itself as a worthy opponent to Major League Baseball and the National Football League. The NBA got its first television exposure during the 1953-54 season on the long-since folded DuMont network. At that time, baseball was still the national pastime, and pro football was beginning to take the spotlight as the favorite sport. Even college basketball was …show more content…

The savior for the NBA emerged in the form of Danny Biasone, who instituted the 24-second shot clock that most agree, saved the league. The 1954-55 seasons was the first played with the shot clock, and the results were a more wide open style of play far more attractive to television viewers. The NBA has been selected for this study to determine how television coverage changed mass media coverage of basketball and the way the viewers perceived the game.
Perhaps no sport was more influenced by the advent of television than professional basketball. From the earliest days of television, NBA officials realized the power of the medium and they realized that any chances they had for success were directly linked to their survival on television. Players and coaches alike were concerned with the way their game was presented on television, even during the league 's first decade on television. This made it clear that everyone in the NBA knew that league success was directly related to television. NBA officials also knew that in order to appeal to viewers, they would have to implement rules that would make the NBA product more viewer-friendly. In the early 1950s, the NBA suffered from the perception that it was a slow-paced game. This was due to the fact that in those days, if a team had the lead into the fourth quarter, it would "freeze the ball" and turn the game into a tedious foul-shooting exhibition. This style of play threatened the NBA 's survival

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