How Does a Basketball Scoreboard Work?

How Does a Basketball Scoreboard Work?

A scoreboard is an important thing in basketball or any sport that tells you all about the situation transparently. The basketball scoreboard shows the total minutes left in your next timeout for the quarter.

It also displays each team’s successful baskets and the score they got awarded with it. But unfortunately, a few people don’t even know how does a basketball scoreboard work? 

Even though working on the basketball scoreboard and understanding the numbers it displays on the screen is very easy.  But still, many people keep asking basic questions about it so we have decided to explain all about it in detail here.

How Does a Basketball Scoreboard Work?

How does a basketball scoreboard work?

The basic function of the basketball scoreboard is to show the total score awarded to each team and the time left before the next break. But it doesn’t just settle there because you should know a lot more about it to completely understand what the numbers mean on the screen.

Also, those match freaks that have missed a match by any chance would like to read the match summary. And therefore, having complete knowledge of the scoreboard numbers and the summary overall is very important.

Box score

A box score is a complete summary of the match with each team’s individual performances, and teamwork performances. This is usually a screen that shows how many free throws, three-pointers, rebounds, minutes played, and the total points.

If you are wondering how they calculate so quickly and show all the details on the screen immediately, then don’t worry. There’s a whole bunch of people sitting right beside the court and they keep calculating every moment of the match. And that is the reason the results are shown on the screens so quickly.

Reading a basketball box score

As we have already told you that a basketball box tells all the statistics of the overall match as well as the individual player’s performance. But as we all know how big the screens are usually at basketball matches, so it becomes difficult to show all data in detail.

This is because there’s too much data to show and still it needs to be clear and easy to read. That’s why the data is in short form and you have to know about all the short forms of the data to understand the scoreboard.

Here we will tell you all about the short forms displayed on the screen and what they mean:

MIN (Minutes):

This is very simple to remember because it shows the total number of minutes a player played on the court. The statisticians keep a record of each player individually and they have the authority to round up a time played by 30 seconds. They can increment or decrement the total time by 30 seconds like if a player has played 24:33. Now here the player has played only 24 minutes and 33 seconds. But when the statisticians will write the record, they will round it up and say the player has played 25 minutes. 

But this was only for those players who actually played the match, but for those players who didn’t play a match or any of its quarts, the rule is different. Like if a player didn’t play any quarter in the game or the entire game, they will mark it as DNP. Here DNP stands for “Did Not Play.”

FGM (Field Goals Made):

FGM is a little different than other scoreboard values because it doesn’t show the number of points scored on the board. In fact, this shows the total number of field goals made by the player or the entire team. Like if someone or a team has scored a 3-pointer and a 2-pointer, the statisticians will not count it as 5 points scored, but just 2 field goals made. It doesn’t matter how many scores they got or the number of tries they took, just the successful shots will be counted in this summary.

FGA (Field Goals Attempted):

FGA refers to the total number of goals attempted during a match within a basketball regulation but outside the free throws. This doesn’t count the successful shots but only the attempted shots. Also, there should not be any shooting foul during the attempt to call it an FGA. Otherwise, this shot will not be counted as an FGA shot. 

You must already know what a shooting foul is. But if you don’t know, the shooting foul is when a player is about to shoot a shot and the defender illegally touches the opponent team’s player or his arm. 

FG% (Field Goal Percentage):

FG% is not the same as FGM or FGA. But this is just a little bit different than those because it is derived from those values. Actually, this percentage is calculated after getting those two values to how bad or good a team or a player has performed. So to calculate the field goal percentage, you need to divide the field goals made by the number of field goals attempted and you will get the answer. You can do this to calculate an individual player’s performance as well as the overall team’s performance.

3 PM (3-Pointer Field Goals made):

As the name suggests, the 3 PM denotes the total number of only the successful three-pointers in the entire game. This value can be calculated for both, the team and the individual players.

3PA (3-Pointer Field Goals Attempted):

3PA is the value that tells you how many times a player or the entire team has tried to score a three-pointer. It doesn’t count only the successful ones. 

3P% (3-Pointer Field Goals Percentage):

3P% is the value that tells us how good or bad a team or the player was during the match. This value comes by dividing the total number of field goals made by the total number of field goals attempted. The percentage in the result is the answer that statisticians show on the screen by calculating the overall math.

FTM (Free Throws Made):

This abbreviation tells us the total number of free throws made by a player or the team. The free throws are given by the referee which gives the player and the team one point if it is successful.

FTA (Free Throws Attempted):

This shows the total number of attempted free throws on the scoreboard. That means it doesn’t really matter how many free throws were successful and how many were unsuccessful. But it matters a lot when they calculate the overall performance in percentage.

FT% (Free Throws Percentage):

This is the total percentage of a player or the team to show how bad or good a player or the team has played. It is calculated by dividing the total number of free throws made by the total number of free throws attempted.

REB (Rebounds):

A rebound is when a basketball player gets the ball. It can be either after a failed free throw or from the offensive or the defensive side. But this number is counted whenever this is done by any player in the match.

OREB (Offensive Rebounds):

The total number of offensive rebounds.

DREB (Defense Rebounds):

The defense rebounds are counted when a player or the team is defending their side. We have seen that some scoreboards miss this display either because of the shortage of space or for whatever reason. But you can easily calculate this by subtracting the total offensive rebounds from the overall rebounds of the match.

There are many types of summaries that you see on the scoreboards. You get complete knowledge on this website by visiting regularly. 

What are the 2 ways of scoring in a basketball game?

Basketball has many rules that you have to follow and score your points. But there are three basic point-scoring methods that are called 2-pointers, 3-pointers, and free throws.

How long does a scoreboard last?

Scoreboards are made by different brands and all of them give certain warranties. But any usual scoreboard can last between 10 – 15 years easily but on the outside court. Similarly, an inside scoreboard can even last longer up to 30 years.

Who invented the scoreboard in basketball?

The very first electric scoreboard was invented back in 1908. It was made by an innovator George Baird who was from Chicago. This scoreboard was not accepted for a long time and then two small basketball league owners used this to test its abilities. And then it was adopted by many.

Why is a scoreboard important?

A scoreboard is important to ensure transparency in the results. But it is not important for only this as it is also important for the teams and the individual players to plan their next moves and shifts in the game.

What is a basketball goal called?

When a player successfully puts the basketball in the basket, it is called a “Field Goal” by the NBA. This name for a goal is used in all references like in the match summaries, referees use this word for a goal and everywhere else.

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