How Long Are NBA Quarters (And Why)?

Exact Answer: 12 minutes

The NBA games have 4 quarters and the length of each quarter is around 12 minutes. In the NBA game, the clock would be set to count the minutes for completion of each quarter. The National Basketball Association is a professional standard basketball game.

The league contains 29 teams from the United States and 1 from Canada. The National Basketball Association is mainly for all the men basketball players. The length of the NBA games is 2 to 3 hours as there are many breaks between the quarters.

The length of an NBA game would be around 2 hours 30 minutes, including the play stoppages, timeout, and breaks. The total length of the game without any events or timeouts would be 48 minutes.

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How Long Are NBA Quarters?          

NBA QuartersTime
Minimum time12 minutes
Maximum time12 minutes

The quarter length of the National Basketball Association depends on the length of the basketball game. The quarter length will not change if not decided by the authorities. All the players have to follow the clock present on the basketball court.

All the associations organizing the NBA game would have different quarter-time lengths. The quarter and game time length would be different for all the leagues. Every basketball game is organized on the basis of rules and guidelines provided by the authority controlling the game.

For NBA, the crew chief would play a vital role in taking and deciding major decisions for the game. The referee and umpire also contribute to decision-making. The NBA game doesn’t have the possession arrow concept in it.

The team who would win the tip-off would get the first at the beginning of the game or in the first quarter. The length of half time is 15 minutes that comes between the second and third periods. The NBA game is quite lengthier than the FIFA games.

The NBA games also contain an overtime period which would be around 5 minutes. The game between the Indianapolis Olympians and Rochester Royals in 1951 is still recorded as the lengthiest NBA game. The overtime period in that game was quite long.

Another match that happened in 1981 was quite long with a playtime of around 73 minutes. The name of the players going to play in the NBA game would be registered 20 minutes before the beginning of the game.

The list would include the name of the players along with the jersey number. The name of the coaches, captains, and assistants would also be mentioned in the list.

Why Are NBA Quarters This Long?

The privilege to choose the bench and basket would be there with the home team. The coach would choose the five players’ names on the list. The coach will have the right to confirm the score sheet. The game would start after the whistle of the referee.

All the players of the two teams would be there on the field. The moment any player would touch the ball, then the game would begin. The referee would take the responsibility to throw the ball in the air in the center of the area in a circle.

At the end of each quarter of the NBA game, the game time would stop after the whistle is blown.

If a team calls a timeout, then the clock would stop. If the referee will find any difference in score, then the game would stop after the 4th quarter. If any foul would be made by the players, then the game would stop for some time.


The major decisions of the game would be taken by the organizing committee or association. The referee would take a major decision when to stop the game. The players of the game can’t play the game without registration.

All the rules and regulations will be the same for all the NBA seasons. The players are supposed to follow all the NBA game rules. The quarter time of the NBA games rules will not change as it is fixed by the authorities and organizing team.



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Hi! I'm Nidhi.

Here at the EHL, it's all about delicious, easy recipes for casual entertaining. So come and join me at the beach, relax and enjoy the food.

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