Of Interest/Basketball: Why Basketball Players Are Called "Cagers"

Pat Aitken

The first pro club in basketball, “The Trenton (New Jersey) Basketball Team,” were responsible for giving the name “cagers” to basketball players.

In those early days of basketball, their manager strung chicken wire around the court to keep the ball in play. (It was also a response to a news-
paper comment that his team played like monkeys).

The Trenton manager's chicken wire developed into a whole series of rope and wire cages around the courts. Basketball became known as the “cage game” and the players were dubbed “cagers.”

1. FreeDarko Presents: The Undisputed Guide to Pro Basketball History, 2010.
2. Roland Lazenby, The Lakers: A Basketball Journey, Masters Press. 1993.

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