The NBA & ABA Both Started as 11-Team Leagues in 1946 and 1967
The NBA Playoffs start today as the league gears up to crown the L.A. Lakers as a 3-time champion or present the Larry O' Brien gold-trophy to a new team. It also marks the home stretch run to a very historical June for the league as it prepares for monumental Anniversary celebration.
The NBA (National Basketball Association) and ABA (American Basketball Association) both started as 11-team leagues during their inaugural seasons of 1946-47 and 1967-68.
This coming June the NBA will be celebrating its 65th Anniversary of being formed. The NBA was founded on June 6, 1946 in New York City at the old Hotel Commodore (now the Grand Hyatt). June 6, 2011 will be the day the NBA turns 65.
This will be one of those moments in sports history that people will say I was doing this or that the day I heard the NBA turned 65.
Fifteen-years ago the NBA had a grand celebration as it turned 50. There was the unveiling of the NBA's 50 Greatest Players. Now the league will be ready to turn 65 with the first crop of baby-boomers.
The ABA started out as renegade league in 1967. The league started out just like the NBA with 11-teams. They were fresh, cool, and very entertaining with their colorful uniforms, uptempo style of play, and even more colorful red, white, and blue basketball.
The league even had a three-point shot. The three-point shot is now a major part of the NBA and college basketball as teams are always looking for long-range marksmen.
In the ABA players soared to the rim and threw down the first modern day highlight-reel dunks. The league lasted only 9-years but left a mark that is remembered in the minds or those who saw ABA games live or lived through their existence.
By the time the league started its final season in 1975-76 they were down to six teams and the end seemed inevitable.
On June 17, 1976 the NBA/ABA announced that they were going to merge. Four of the six teams would become NBA franchises the Denver Nuggets, Indiana Pacers, New York (New Jersey) Nets, and San Antonio Spurs.
The Kentucky Colonels and Spirit of St. Louis folded as the NBA grew from 18 to 22 teams.
June 17, 2011 will be the 35th Anniversary of the NBA/ABA merger. It will be a time to remember the ABA, and its impact on the game of basketball.
The NBA and ABA both started as 11-team leagues. The NBA was founded on June 6th and the NBA/ABA merger was announced on June 17th, 11-days apart. The NBA will celebrate its 65th Anniversary 6+5=11. Both historical Anniversaries (65th and 35th) will occur during the year 2011. The combined Anniversaries 65 and 35 equal 100. What a historical June for the NBA and the ABA
June is also NBHHCM (National Basketball & Hip-Hop Culture Month).