No doubt thousands of people will be going to see the Harlem Globetrotters in action at the O2 to witness their magical skills on the basketball court. The show takes place Sunday, April 24, at the North Greenwich venue and tickets are still available to those who need some last minute convincing.

The Harlem Globetrotters are a household name in sports entertainment but how much is actually known about them? Here are some facts to quench your thirst for Globetrotter knowledge.

The Globetrotters will be performing for fans at the O2

1. Genesis

The team started life back in 1926 as the Savoy Big Five, named after a district in Chicago, and played exhibition games before dances at the Savoy Ballroom after it opened in 1927.

2. Re-branding

After several players left the team in 1928, the remaining roster was renamed the Globe Trotters before Abe Saperstein, then manager and promoter, decided to pick Harlem as the hometown. Harlem was considered the centre of African-American culture and most of the players were African-American at that time.

Read More: Harlem Globetrotters set for performance at The O2 arena

3. Homecoming (of sorts)

Despite being called the Harlem Globetrotters, the team didn’t actually play in their namesake city until 1968, more than 40 years after their formation.

Harlem Globetrotters play at the Manchester Arena in 2015

4. Alleged winning streak

On September 12, 1995, the Globetrotters lost 91-85 to an All Star team in Vienna, ending what was alleged to have been an 8,829-game winning streak dating back to 1971.

5. Making it big in Hollywood

In the 1970s, the popularity of the Globetrotters was such that the stars voiced themelves in two different cartoon shows – The Harlem Globetrotters and Super Globetrotters. The team also played themselves in the 1981 live-action TV-movie The Harlem Globetrotters on Gilligan’s Island

Read more: How do I get to the Harlem Globetrotters at The O2?