By Daniela Paredez. sport. At Tuesday, December 17th 2019, 22:51:56 PM.
The NBA began life as the Basketball Association of America in 1946 and played under that monkier for 3 years before, in 1949, merging with the National Basketball League and changing names to the NBA. The BAA started out with 11 teams in 1946 but lost four of them before the start of the next season. Despite the loss of four teams the BAA was having a lot of success against its rival the NBL and was able to entice four of the NBL’s premire franchises to join the BAA in 1948.
Soccer now nearly matches baseball’s popularity. Seven percent say it is their favorite sport to watch, the highest that sport has registered to date. Only once before have at least 7% of Americans named a sport other than football, basketball or baseball as their favorite — and that was auto racing in 1997. (Auto racing is now down to 2% of mentions.)
With the national-anthem controversy in full swing this past October, a Gallup poll indicated the NFL was taking a hit. Fifty-seven percent of Americans said they were fans of professional football, down 10 percentage points from the previous time the question was asked, in December 2012. Support for most other sports, including college football, had not changed meaningfully during the same five-year span.