*
AP Photo/Paul E. Thomson

Basketball is one of the most famous sports in the world. It’s play in pretty lot every nation you can think of. The National Basketball Association, i beg your pardon is a member that USA Basketball and also recognized by FIBA (International Basketball Federation) together the nationwide governing body for basketball in the unified States, consists of teams each worth billions of dollars. The NBA Finals alone color etc tens of countless viewers every year.

You are watching: How long does a basketball game usually last

Many pan watch basketball because it’s basically nonstop action. But before LeBron James was gliding coast-to-coast for a dunk or before Michael Jordan to be hitting clutch jump shots or even prior to Steph Curry was swishing three-pointers indigenous the half-court line, basketball was boring and in decrease in the 1950s.


The implementation the the shot clock essentially saved the game and put fans in the seats once it was introduced. Before it, NBA teams could hold the ball for as long as they’d like once they had a lead. The result? final scores choose 19-18 when the Fort Wayne Pistons beat the Minneapolis Lakers in 1950. Dean blacksmith made a life implementing a “four corners” stall offense in college the was unstoppable since there was no shot clock.

The game of basketball and its rules — because that which there are plenty — have been revised throughout the years to placed the best feasible product top top the court possible.

That gift said, one pressing question many new fans questioning is: exactly how long is a basketball game? that answer varies since different rule exist because that the plenty of levels that basketball that incorporate professional basketball, Olympic basketball, university basketball, high school and also youth basketball.

How long Is one NBA Basketball Game?

*
AP Photo/Kathy Willens

NBA gamings are split into four quarters, each of which critical 12 minutes long. That method there room 48 complete minutes of play in a single game. Halftime gives played a 15-minute rest to permit them to rest in between the second and 3rd quarter. Each overtime period lasts five minutes.


The average length of a basketball game in the NBA lasts all over from 2-3 hours after factoring in team timeouts, replay reviews, shooting fouls, TV timeouts, halftime breaks, breathers and other stoppages. Most video game lengths are about two and a fifty percent hours.

How long Is a college Basketball Game?

AP Photo/Richard Shiro

College basketball games are contempt different. NCAA men’s basketball games consist of two 20-minute halves, adding up come 40 total minutes of video game time. Every overtime period is 5 minutes long. NCAA women’s university games space played in 4 10-minute quarters just choose WNBA games are. Both take about two hrs from begin to finish.

Most high institution basketball games in the United states are play in 8-minute quarters, however that varies from state come state.

How The shoot Clock readjusted Basketball

*
AP Photo/Michael Okoniewski

RELATED:Basketball Terms: 50 Terms because that Anyone discovering the Game

Back in 1954, the Syracuse Nationals owner Danny Biasone and general manager Leo Farris started implementing a 24-second shot clock during scrimmages. The an outcome was a faster, higher-scoring game that the NBA officially embraced for the 1954-55 season.

The shooting clock completely revolutionized the game. Points soared, together did attendance. Some stated it conserved basketball, others said it rescued it. Either way, everyone was in favor of it.


The NBA at this time uses a 24-second shooting clock. This way teams must shoot the ball before that time expires, or else they lose possession that the ball. The shooting clock resets to 14 secs in the NBA ~ an offensive rebound top top a missed shooting or complimentary throw that hit the rim.

The national Collegiate athletic Association (NCAA) currently offers a 30-second shooting clock for both men and women’s basketball matches. The league presented a 45-second shoot clock in 1985 and also reduced it to 35 2nd in 1993 before landing ~ above a 30-second shoot clock in 2015.

How countless Timeouts are In a Basketball Game?

The video game clock stops a whole lot in the NBA, i m sorry is why the league has tried to rate up games by limiting the variety of timeouts teams can call. Together of the 2017-18 season, NBA teams are allowed seven timeouts per game. Each team is also only afforded 2 timeouts in the last three minutes, a change of pace from once it could call three timeouts in the final two minutes.

Each timeout in these experienced games last 75 seconds. The NBA used to enable 100-second timeouts and also “20-second” timeouts the were actually more like 60 seconds.

The NCAA permits three 30-second timeouts every game, 2 of which deserve to roll over right into the second half. In addition, teams acquire one 60-second timeout that deserve to be called at any type of time that the game. High school games follow a comparable model to university rules.


#DidYouKnow in jan 1951,Indianapolis Olympians & Rochester Royals fought over 6 OVERTIMES to decide the winner? pic.twitter.com/aoiv9dhyZh

— NBAIndia (
NBAHistory was a regular-season game: Jan. 6, 1951: 6OT (78 minutes) Indianapolis Olympians 75, Rochester Royals 73. The Royals (photo) would at some point win the
NBA championship the season in a trembling seven-game collection over the
NYKnicks pic.twitter.com/bfI3XFORcx

— NBA history (
NBAHistory) might 4, 2019


There’s a reason the NBA has actually stricter time constraints now. Watch no more than a video game played top top January 6, 1951, for simply why the is.

The Rochester Royals and also Indianapolis Olympians squared turn off in a (not so epic) game that wound up lasting a total time the 78 minutes and also six overtimes, good for the longest NBA basketball game in history. The bout, which took ar at Edgerton Park Arena in Rochester, brand-new York, was ultimately won by the Olympians.

What’s horrendous is that simply 18 points were scored in the timeframe the the entire six overtimes. No team score in the second and fourth overtimes. Why? since the team who started with the round tended to wait for the clock to run out prior to throwing up the final shot.


From the Rochester Democrat: “ more than 26 of the 30 overtime minutes, the round stayed nicely tucked far under an eight of a royal or Olympian player. One or an additional player simply stood there v the score tied, waiting the end the clock because that a last-second ?nothing-to-lose? shot. ? Customers that complained were melted up in ~ the unchallenged freeze. For the Olympians, it sure wasn?t good basketball, but it paid off.”


Booooooring. That’s a much cry from the time Tracy McGrady score 13 point out in 33 seconds, a feat that actually happened in a professional basketball league and also is still remarkable.

The Longest game in NCAA History


Today in #sportshistory in 1981 Cincinnati beat Bradley 75-73 in 7 OTs in the longest game in NCAA competition. Pic.twitter.com/Cfq9Vasua8

— OTBS digital (

As because that college basketball, the longest game in NCAA men’s basketball history was a similar 75-minute, seven-overtime game in between Bradley and also Cincinnati in 1981. The came prior to a shot clock was implemented as well.

See more: When Parking Next To A Curb, You May Not Park More Than :, Access Denied

The sport of basketball has come a long way since the pre-shot clock days. I’m not certain we’ll ever before see an additional six- or seven-overtime game, and that’s most likely for the best. The average points per game per team is the highest that been due to the fact that the 1980s, therefore sit back and enjoy the fireworks.

MORE:The NBA?s Tallest football player Make constant Folks look at Ridiculous


*
About the author: Patrick Pinak, employee Writer
Patrick spanned the Florida Gators during the forgettable will certainly Muschamp and also Jim McElwain eras prior to spending two seasons writing for significant League Baseball. He"s a baseball junkie who spends his job defending Derek Jeter and the Miami Marlins. He lives in southern Florida however his heart belongs in Gainesville, Florida.