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Basketball at the 1936 Summer Olympics

Basketball at the 1936 Summer Olympics was the first appearance of the sport as an official medal event. The tournament was played between 7 August and 14 August 1936 in Berlin, Germany. 23 (2 withdrew) nations entered the competition, making basketball the largest tournament of the team sports.

1st Olympic Basketball Tournament
Berlin 1936
Tournament details
Olympics1936 Summer Olympics
Host nationGermany
CityBerlin
DurationAugust 7 – August 14
Men's tournament
Teams23
Medals
1 Gold medalists  United States
2 Silver medalists Canada
3 Bronze medalists  Mexico
Tournaments
 London 1948 →

The IOC and International Basketball Federation, which is the governing body of international basketball, used the 1936 tournament to experiment with outdoor basketball. Lawn tennis courts were used for the competition. This caused problems when the weather was adverse, especially during the final game.

The medals were awarded by James Naismith, the inventor of basketball. All went to North American teams.

Contents

MedallistsEdit

ResultsEdit

BracketsEdit

Third round onwardsEdit

 
Third roundQuarter-finalsSemi-finalsGold medal match
 
              
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  United States56
 
 
 
  Philippines23
 
  Philippines39
 
 
 
  Estonia22
 
  United States25
 
 
 
  Mexico10
 
  Italy27
 
 
 
  Chile19
 
  Italy17
 
 
 
  Mexico34
 
  Mexico28
 
14 August
 
  Japan22
 
  United States19
 
 
 
  Canada8
 
  Canada27
 
 
 
   Switzerland9
 
  Canada41
 
 
 
  Uruguay21
 
  Uruguay28
 
 
 
  Czechoslovakia19
 
  Canada42
 
 
 
  Poland15 Bronze medal match
 
  Poland33
 
 14 August
 
  Brazil25
 
  Poland (W/O)2  Mexico26
 
 
  Peru0   Poland12
 
 
 
 

Fifth-place classificationEdit

Preliminary round 5th place game
      
  Philippines 32
  Italy 14
  Philippines 32
  Uruguay 23
3   Uruguay (w/o) 2
  Peru 0

First roundEdit

Winners advanced to the second round. Losers competed in the first consolation round for another chance to move on.

United States   2–0   Spain
Hungary   0–2   Czechoslovakia

First consolation roundEdit

Winners returned to the main competition for the second round. Losers were out of the tournament.

  • Uruguay 17-10 Belgium
  • China 45-38 France
  • Egypt 33-23 Turkey
  • Canada w/o Hungary
  • Germany w/o Spain
  • Poland

Second roundEdit

Winners advanced to the third round. Losers competed in the second consolation round for another chance to move on.

  • Philippines 32-30 Mexico
  • Japan 43-31 Poland
  • Uruguay 36-23 Egypt
  • Peru 29-21 China
  • United States 52-28 Estonia
  • Italy 58-16 Germany
  • Switzerland 25-12 Czechoslovakia
  • Chile 23-18 Brazil
  • Canada 34-23 Latvia

Second consolation roundEdit

  • Poland def. Latvia, 28–23
  • Brazil def. China, 32–14
  • Mexico def. Egypt, 32–10
  • Czechoslovakia def. Germany, 20–9
  • Estonia

Third roundEdit

The third round was the first to cause automatic elimination for losers, with no consolation round. Winners advanced to the quarterfinals.

  Philippines 39–22   Estonia
Scoring by half: 21–4, 18–18
  Chile 19–27   Italy
Scoring by half: 12–16, 7–11
  Mexico 28–22   Japan
Scoring by half: 12–8, 16–14
   Switzerland 9–27   Canada
Scoring by half: 1–13, 8–14
  Uruguay 28–19   Czechoslovakia
Scoring by half: 14–8, 14–11
  Brazil 25–33   Poland
Scoring by half: 10–17, 15–16

The United States and Peru had byes given, causing them to advance to the quarterfinals.

QuarterfinalsEdit

Winners of the quarterfinals advanced to the medals round, with losers playing in classification matches.

  • United States 56-23 Philippines
  • Mexico 24-17 Italy
  • Canada 41-21 Uruguay
  • Poland 2-0 Peru

The Peruvian team abandoned the Olympic Games in protest to the actions of German authorities in the football tournament.

Classification 5–8Edit

Preliminary matchesEdit

  • Philippines 32-14 Italy
  • Uruguay w/o Peru

Peru forfeit: See above.

Fifth place matchEdit

  • Philippines 33-23 Uruguay

Medals roundEdit

SemifinalsEdit

August 13
United States   25–10   Mexico
Scoring by half: 13–2, 12–8
Poland   15–42   Canada
Scoring by half: 6-23, 9-19

Bronze medal matchEdit

August 14
  Mexico   26–12   Poland
Scoring by half: 23–8, 3–4

FinalEdit

August 14
18:00
  United States   19–8   Canada  
Scoring by half: 15–4, 4–4
Pts: Fortenberry 7
Berlin, Germany
Attendance: 900+

The final was played outdoors on a dirt court in driving rain; due to the quagmire, the teams could not dribble, and the scoring was held to a minimum. Highest scorer in the game was Joe Fortenberry for the United States with seven points. In addition, there were virtually no seats for spectators, and almost all of the nearly 1,000 in attendance had to stand in the rain throughout the entire game.

AwardsEdit

 1936 Olympic Basketball Champions 
 
United States
First title

Participating nationsEdit

For the team rosters see: Basketball at the 1936 Summer Olympics – Men's team squads.

Each country was allowed to enter one team of 14 players and they all were eligible for participation; however, only seven were allowed to dress for competition at any one game.

A total of 199(*) basketball players from 23 (2 withdrew) nations competed at the Berlin Games:

  •   Belgium (8 – from a squad of 14)
  •   Brazil (8 – from a squad of 10)
  •   Canada (9 – from a squad of 14)
  •   Chile (7 – from a squad of 11)
  •   Republic of China (13 – from a squad of 14)
  •   Czechoslovakia (12 – from a squad of 12)
  •   Egypt (7 – from a squad of 10)
  •   Estonia (8 – from a squad of 11)
  •   France (11 – from a squad of 14)
  •   Germany (10 – from a squad of 14)
  •   Italy (13 – from a squad of 14)
  •   Japan (8 – from a squad of 11)
  •   Latvia (7 – from a squad of 11)
  •   Mexico (11 – from a squad of 11)
  •   Peru (9 – from a squad of 13)
  •   Philippines (9 – from a squad of 12)
  •   Poland (10 – from a squad of 14)
  •   Switzerland (8 – from a squad of 13)
  •   Turkey (8 – from a squad of 10)
  •   United States (14)
  •   Uruguay (9 – from a squad of 13)

(*) NOTE: There are only players counted, which participated in one game at least.

Not all reserve players are known.

SummaryEdit

Note: Hungary and Spain withdrew before competition started

ReferencesEdit