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The First Basketball Game Was Just A Big Brawl

The University of Kansas has unearthed a rare audio recording of basketball inventor James Naismith discussing the first-ever basketball game. The audio, recorded in 1939, is a fun listen, and not just because Naismith sounds like a real-life Simpsons character. The best part is when Naismith describes how violent the first game of basketball was.

From the interview:

Well I didn’t have enough [rules], and that’s where I made my big mistake. The boys tackling, kicking and punching in the clinches. They ended up in a free-for-all in the middle of the gym floor. Before I could pull them apart, one boy was knocked out, several of them had black eyes, and one had a dislocated shoulder. It certainly was murder.


We should all be very glad Naismith eventually came up with some new rules. Here’s the full interview:

Photo via Getty

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