Following the NBA for the first time? Here’s 7 things you must know

The National Basketball Association (NBA) is the biggest, most watched Basketball league in the world with some of the biggest global sporting superstars competing.

Early 2000s saw the big center players taking the headlines. The likes of Shaquille O’Neal and Tim Duncan were two of the stars from the start of the century. Shaq would take a lot of the headlines for his giant stature, weighing in at around 325 pounds, he would dominate the league on offense and defense.

Nowadays, the Guard has stepped up as being a vital part of the side and one drawing the crowds. The early years of the century saw a devotion to the slam dunk though now fans ae excited about the return to popularity of the three-pointer. Steph Curry is considered to be one of the true greats of basketball and regularly uses the three-point shot for his Golden State Warriors side. 

The stars change and the styles differ as the NBA grows but it always has excitement and energy which attracts the adoring public. Having a solid center to build your team around is still a key part of most sides roster building, though stars are being created in different areas with the varied attacking styles needed for glory in the NBA.

For those who are not ye followers of the NBA, there is no shortage of ways to get involved. With the NBA playoffs underway you can watch through the NBA subscription app following sides like last year’s winners the Milwaukee Bucks as well as the favorite in the NBA odds, the Phoenix Suns. 

The NBA has its own YouTube channel as well which gives excellent 10-minute highlights of every game if you can’t see it live. If you are looking for the live options, the NBA has multiple deals with broadcasters across North America and the rest of the world to show the games live.

If you have had your interest peaked from the NBA, then here are seven points which will help you get underway to becoming a superfan.


The first is the website, with all the information on every side in the league, articles from some of the most respected journalists in the game as well as video and stats to really build your knowledge. 

Not only being able to do some background research on the teams and players, but you can also see which games will be coming up as well as all information on each team’s route to the finals.

  1. Rules and Regulations

Getting an understanding on how the teams compete, the schedule as well as the rules on the court is vital for your understanding. You can pick up a lot of this while watching, though it is good to get an idea of the basic rules before watching. The rules, like in many sports, can change slightly each season, but the basics often stay the same. 

  1. NBA YouTube

As mentioned before, this is a great way to see all the games condensed down into 10-minute videos, including every point scored. It doesn’t beat the excitement of the live game, though is perfect for getting to know each side, as it can take a while to go through each full game!

  1. Don’t watch in silence

The ex-pros and experts of the game will commentate on each game giving you the insights into the tactics of the teams as well as learning the rules. They know they have a varied audience and will ensure the information coming across explains why referees are making certain calls, or why teams are making specific changes to their lineup or style of play in game.

  1. NBA Computer Games

The NBA brings out a new game through EA Sports each season, updated and more interactive each year. If you’re a gamer, this is a great way to learn more about teams and players while playing the game. 

Many people will play this game more than they would watch basketball, especially if living outside of the United States, but will get an understanding and become fans of different sides due to the games.

  1. Find a team to support

This could be for any reason; supporting the team the player you most recognize who has got you interested, a city you have visited or a team a friend or relative backs. 

Having a team to back and players to be invested in helps with the immersion into the sport as a fan. It is the same in any sport, if you can get behind and route for a side, the enjoyment and excitement builds, as well as sometimes the disappointment, but you will continue to get behind them as each game goes by.

  1. Fantasy Basketball and Sportsbooks

Be it for gambling or just friendly competition amongst friends or in worldwide leagues, fantasy basketball is a great way to get into the sport by being competitive yourself. Checking on the progress of players, making trades and monitoring each team’s schedule. 

Adding these games to your accumulator or putting on wagers on specific games will also help with your understanding of the game and aid your immersion into fandom of the NBA.

It is such as exciting league which continues to be one of the most followed in the world, and this season’s playoffs once again will not disappoint.

Christopher Stern

Christopher Stern is a Washington-based reporter. Chris spent many years covering tech policy as a business reporter for renowned publications. He has extensive experience covering Congress, the Federal Communications Commission, and the Federal Trade Commissions. He is a graduate of Middlebury College. Email:[email protected]

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