3-on-3 basketball won't be part of 2016 Olympics

Christian Petersen

The IOC ruled last month that 3-on-3 basketball won't be coming to the Games at Rio de Janeiro.

Officials from FIBA tried their best, but 3-on-3 basketball won't be a part of the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. According to Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today, the International Olympic Committee made the official ruling last month to maintain status quo for Olympic basketball.

In a statement, the IOC's executive board said "any request from International Federations (IFs) that would result in a higher number of athletes or increased number of medals, thereby adding to the cost and complexity of the Games, would not be considered."

FIBA was hoping 3-on-3 basketball could gain significant international popularity through the Olympics, as Zillgitt notes, much likes sports like beach volleyball and BMX. However, basketball's leading international body will now have to settle for the 2014 World Championships in Moscow as the biggest stage for the sport.

The IOC also made another ruling, according to Zillgitt, by opting not to expand the Olympic tournament field to 16 teams. FIBA wanted to keep the same number of games, avoiding the problems described above, by having each team play fewer games, but the IOC denied the proposal.

FIBA could ultimately decide to now pursue an age limit for the Olympics by the 2020 Games, which would allow for promotion of the World Cup as the premier international competition. That arrangement would be similar to how FIFA and international soccer currently handle things.

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