by Marcel Mutoni

Following the Beijing Games, there should no longer be any doubt as to where the best brand of basketball is found. The superstars of the NBA made sure of that by winning the Gold in exceedingly convincing fashion.

And now, the rest of the world will try to emulate the NBA game – at least when it comes to the look of the court.

From the NY Times:

But in two years, the trapezoid will be dead, the arc will be a little deeper and the international game will be a bit closer in style to the N.B.A.’s. The lane will become a rectangle, emulating the United States model. The arc will move to 6.75 meters (22.1 feet) — closer to the N.B.A. standard of 22 feet 9 inches — from 6.25 meters (20.5 feet).

The changes were among several adopted, to little fanfare, by the International Basketball Federation, known as FIBA, in April. The new rules take effect after the world championships in 2010, so they will be in place for the 2012 Olympics in London.

USA Basketball officials are understandably happy with FIBA’s decision to tinker with the geometry of the playing surface, as this gives players on this continent even less excuses now to skip out on international play.

No word yet if international squads will be required to significantly increase their visits to the tattoo parlor in order to meet NBA standards.