bas·​ket·​ball ˈba-skit-ˌbȯl How to pronounce basketball (audio)
often attributive
: a usually indoor court game between two teams of usually five players each who score by tossing an inflated ball through a raised goal
also : the ball used in this game

Examples of basketball in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Unlearning personal biases and forgiving oneself for past mistakes have also been entire journeys for Shepard and former basketball player Wade. Jenna Wang, Peoplemag, 21 Nov. 2023 They were further swayed by the basketball player Draymond Green, who documented the Golden State Warriors’ 2021-22 championship season, including an episode from his hotel room after he was ejected from a playoff game. Emmanuel Morgan, New York Times, 20 Nov. 2023 Yet, what distinguishes H Street is the public attention catalyzed by high-profile incidents, the most recent in September when Blake Bozeman, a former Morgan State University basketball player, was fatally shot at the Cru Lounge. Paul Schwartzman, Washington Post, 20 Nov. 2023 The basketball players' conviction this week suggests that health care fraud is a growing issue in professional sports. Khristopher J. Brooks, CBS News, 16 Nov. 2023 Forward finishes with a career-high 27 points and 11 rebounds as San Diego State beats in-state foe after falling at BYU Practice ended Monday, and San Diego State basketball coach Brian Dutcher walked straight to the JAM Center bathroom. Mark Zeigler, San Diego Union-Tribune, 15 Nov. 2023 His father competed in track and field, and taught him perfect running form; his mother played basketball for the French national team. Louisa Thomas, The New Yorker, 13 Nov. 2023 That's the percentage of sudden cardiac deaths among NCAA athletes that happen in basketball players, according to a statement published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. Mary Whitfill Roeloffs, Forbes, 13 Nov. 2023 The Cougars were picked to finish 13th in their first season in the 14-team Big 12, regarded as the nation’s best basketball conference, and Pope has been vocal in his assertion that the great equalizer can be the 3-ball. Mark Zeigler, San Diego Union-Tribune, 9 Nov. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'basketball.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1891, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of basketball was in 1891

Dictionary Entries Near basketball

Cite this Entry

“Basketball.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


bas·​ket·​ball -ˌbȯl How to pronounce basketball (audio)
: a court game in which each of two teams tries to toss an inflated ball through a raised goal
also : the ball used in this game

More from Merriam-Webster on basketball

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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