The game of basketball is virtually unrecognizable from its humble beginnings. Gone are stationary sportsmen passing the ball back-and-forth. Gone are scores in the 20s and 30s. Today, it's non-stop, free-flowing action. (Until you get to the last two minutes of the game. Then basketball stops. A lot.)
One obvious difference is the three-point line. It seems to be a rather modern invention: the NBA adopted it in 1979, internationally, it appeared in 1984. However, the line's roots lie in the long-defunct American Basketball League. The league was founded in 1961 by Abe Saperstein, after numerous denials from the NBA to grant him an expansion franchise. The ABL lasted just a season and a half... but not before Saperstein introduced the three-point shot.
Saperstein's contributions to basketball go beyond the three pointer. He was also the founder, owner, and coach of the Harlem Globetrotters. So back in the 1920s, when basketball was considered a lilly-white sport, Saperstein gave African Americans a chance to play.
So, yes, thanks to Saperstein, the game of basketball is virtually unrecognizable...