Three-on-three basketball has officially made the final cut for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. The International Olympics Committee finalized the news on Friday in a widely expected press release.
The IOC met on Friday to determine who will host the 2024 and 2028 Summer Olympics, at which time three-on-three basketball was also made official.
IOC officials see three-on-three basketball as a chance to add a popular urban team sport to a schedule that already includes two urban individual sports — skateboarding and sport climbing.
“The fascinating new events that we approved today, together with the five new sports that were added to the Tokyo 2020 programm last year, represent a step-change in the Olympic programm. I am delighted that the Olympic Games in Tokyo will be more youthful, more urban and will include more women”, IOC President Thomas Bach said in the press release.
While it is basketball, the Olympics aren’t necessarily expecting to reach top NBA stars with this sport. Traditional basketball will remain an event in the 2020 Olympics, after all, with legendary San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich leading the team.
“(Three-on-three basketball) a different skill set,” FIBA secretary general Patrick Baumann told the Associated Press. “It’s really a 10-minute sprint, no coach, so you need to take the right decisions.”
Instead, a closer comparison would be the famed outdoor courts in New York like Rucker Park, where streetballers play and perform in front of large audiences. Adding three-on-three basketball would add 96 athletes to the 2020 games.
Still, that begs the obvious question: if you could pick from every basketball player in the world, who’s your ideal three-on-three team? Drop it in the comments.