The Basketball League (TBL)
Upcoming season or competition:
Current sports event 2022 TBL season
SportBasketball
Founded2017
Inaugural season2018
CEOEvelyn Magley
PresidentDave Magley
CommissionerCarlnel Wiley
Motto"Where the spirit of the game lives"
No. of teams42
CountriesUnited States
ContinentFIBA Americas (Americas)
Most recent
champion(s)
Enid Outlaws (2021)
Official websitethebasketballleague.net

The Basketball League (TBL), formerly North America Premier Basketball (NAPB), is a minor league basketball organization. The league began operating in North America in 2018 with eight teams, and expanded to over 30 teams as of 2021.

The Basketball League is one of the few minor league basketball organizations providing player salaries from $1,500 to $6,500 per month,[1][2] while teams operate on a budget of $125,000 to $250,000 per season.[3]

History

On July 7, 2017, Sev Hrywnak and Dave Magley announced the formation of a new professional basketball league. Magley previously served as commissioner for the National Basketball League of Canada (NBLC).[4] Hrywnak was the owner of the Rochester Razorsharks. Teams are based throughout the United States and Western Canada. Over the course of two years, the league administration located cities that formerly hosted basketball teams in the defunct Continental Basketball Association, the Premier Basketball League, defunct NBA teams and other potential sports markets. The purpose of the league is to provide opportunities for community involvement particularly schools from the elementary to high school levels. Programs include players reading to younger children, hosting basketball camps for teens, and speaking in school-wide assemblies about substance abuse and staying in school.[5]

The league launched its inaugural 2018 season with eight teams: the Albany Patroons, Kansas City Tornados, Kentucky Thoroughbreds, Nevada Desert Dogs, Ohio Cardinals, Rochester Razorsharks, Vancouver Knights, and the Yakima SunKings. The Ohio Cardinals were replaced mid-season by the Ohio Bootleggers, a team operated by the former ownership of the Vancouver Knights.

On February 25, 2018, Dave Magley announced that there were four more approved franchises in Bellevue, Washington, Raleigh, North Carolina, Tampa, Florida, and San Diego, California, with the goal of 16 total well-funded teams, for a 2019 season.[6]

After the first NAPB season, Magley acquired the league as sole owner, moved the headquarters to Indiana, and named Evelyn Magley—his wife—as the new CEO. On July 14, the league was re-branded as The Basketball League (TBL).[7] Paul Mokeski, head coach and general manager of the Nevada Desert Dogs during the inaugural season, was then named commissioner of the league for the 2019 season.[8] During the league changes, the Ohio Bootleggers, Rochester Razorsharks, and Vancouver Knights folded while the Bellevue team never came to fruition. The league then added the existing teams, the Jamestown Jackals and New York Court Kings, in addition to the three previously announced expansion teams, the Raleigh Firebirds, San Diego Waves, and Tampa Bay Titans. Three teams also slightly re-branded with the Kansas City Tornadoes, Mesquite Desert Dogs, and Owensboro Thoroughbreds. The 2019 season commenced with ten teams.

During the second season, there were many canceled and rescheduled games.[9] The league cut its season short, with the New York Court Kings and Kansas City Tornadoes either folding or ceasing operations for the season.[10]

Prior to the third season, the league added the Columbus Condors, Dayton Flight, Dallas Skyline, Gulf Coast Lions, Indy Express, Lewisville Yellow Jackets, and the Tri-State Admirals as expansion teams.[11][12] The San Diego Waves were replaced by expansion San Diego Armada while the Waves were being relocated, but neither team would make the 2020 schedule.[13] Due to the lack of other western teams, the Yakima SunKings and the Mesquite Desert Dogs suspended operations. The third season started in January 2020, but on March 11, 2020, the league announced the season would end prematurely due to the COVID-19 pandemic and have a four-team playoff on March 18 through 22. However, the tournament was also cancelled as most events throughout the country were closed to prevent the spread of the virus.

The league then proceeded to announce several new teams for the 2021 season, expanding from 12 teams in the curtailed 2020 season to 35 teams by January 11, 2021. Several of the added teams came from the semi-professional American Basketball Association.[14][15][16][17] In March, several teams began opting out of the season due to the ongoing pandemic restrictions.

For the 2021–22 season, the National Basketball League of Canada (NBLC) announced that they had agreed to inter-league series play with several teams from The Basketball League. The games played between the teams from the two leagues are included in their respective regular season standings for each league.[18]


Teams

Hustle
Hustle
Gambits
Gambits
Magic
Magic
Panthers
Panthers
Imperials
Imperials
Sea-Kings
Sea-Kings
Jaguars
Jaguars
Warriors
Warriors
Cobras
Cobras
Coyotes
Coyotes
Lions
Lions
Kings
Kings
Capitals
Capitals
Southern Kings
Southern Kings
Hurricanes
Hurricanes
Sharks
Sharks
Volcanoes
Volcanoes
Royals
Royals
Monarchs
Monarchs
7ers
7ers
Capitals
Capitals
Rebels
Rebels
Legends
Legends
Kings
Kings
Leprechons
Leprechons
Timberjacks
Timberjacks
All-Ameicans
All-Ameicans
Glass City
Glass City
All-Americans
All-Americans
BobKats
BobKats
Pharaohs
Pharaohs
Lightning
Lightning
Fire
Fire
Moguls
Moguls
locations of teams in The Basketball League (TBL). Colors represent divisions as of the 2022 season.


2022 teams

Conference Team City Arena Capacity Founded Joined Head coach
Central Beaumont Panthers Beaumont, Texas Ford Arena 9,100 2018 2022 Omar Sneed
Dallas Skyline Plano, Texas John Paul II High School 2019 2020 Chris Berry
Enid Outlaws Enid, Oklahoma Stride Bank Center 3,887 2020 2021 Mark Dannhoff
Little Rock Lightning Little Rock, Arkansas Jack Stephens Center 5,600 2019 2021 Armando Villanueva
Potawatomi Fire Shawnee, Oklahoma FireLake Arena 5,000 2021 2022 Derrick Rowland
Rockwall 7ers Rockwall, Texas Royse City High School 2021 2022 Kendrick Bryson
Shreveport Mavericks Shreveport, Louisiana Gold Dome 3,000 2006[a] 2021 Steve Tucker
Sugarland Imperials Sugar Land, Texas Wheeler Field House 2,500 2021 2022 James White
Waco Royals Chilton, Texas Chilton High School 2020 2021 Mamadou Diene
Lower Midwest Indiana All-Americans New Castle, Indiana Blue River Valley High School 2,400 2021 2022 John Benson
Kentucky Enforcers Frankfort, Kentucky Connor Convocation Center 1,200 2016 2021 Dustin Driskell
Kokomo BobKats Kokomo, Indiana Memorial Gymnasium 7,200 2020 2021 Cliff Levingston[19]
Lebanon Leprechauns Lebanon, Indiana Rosenstihl Gymnasium 4,099 2021 2022 Brian Rowsom
Medora Timberjacks Medora, Indiana Medora High School 1,200 2021 2022 Mark Morin
Owensboro Thoroughbreds Owensboro, Kentucky Owensboro Sportscenter 5,000 2017 2018 Mark Anderson
Northeast Albany Patroons Albany, New York Washington Avenue Armory 3,600 2017[b] 2018 Will Brown
Atlantic City Gambits Atlantic City, New Jersey Atlantic City High School 2021 2022 Elijah Thorpe
Connecticut Cobras Bridgeport, Connecticut Harvey Hubbell Gymnasium 1,600 2021 2022 Sam Casey
Lehigh Valley Legends Allentown, Pennsylvania multiple 2021 2022 Antawn Dobie
Massachusetts Monarchs Taunton, Massachusetts Taunton High School 2020 2021 David Harrison
Lancaster Kings Lancaster, Pennsylvania Pucillo Gym 3,000 2021 2022 Sergio Afre
Reading Rebels Reading, Pennsylvania Geigle Complex 3,000 2021 2022 Snip Esterly
Syracuse Stallions Syracuse, New York Liverpool High School 2017 2021 Patrick Beilein
Tri-State Admirals Massapequa, New York Basketball Results Fieldhouse 2019 2020 Daniel Jacob
Southeast Carolina Coyotes Columbia, South Carolina Glenforest School 2020 2021 Nelson T. Jones
Central Alabama Jaguars Montgomery, Alabama Garrett Coliseum 12,500 2019 2022 Quartez Harris
Huntsville Hurricanes Huntsville, Alabama James Clemens High School 2022
Gulf Coast Lions Bradenton, Florida Bradenton Christian School 2019 2020 Cykobe Johnson
Raleigh Firebirds Raleigh, North Carolina John Chavis Memorial Park 2018 2019 Bob MacKinnon Jr.
Tallahassee Southern Kings Tallahassee, Florida TCC Eagle Dome 812 2021 2022 Andrew Moten
Tampa Bay Titans Tampa Howard W. Blake High School 2018 2019 David Reichner
Upper Midwest Cincinnati Warriors Cincinnati Courts 4 Sports 150 2021 2022 James Millen
Dayton Flight Dayton, Ohio Dayton Sports Complex 200 2019 2020 Gary Armstrong
Detroit Hustle Detroit, Michigan Loyola High School 400 2010 2021 Aaron McDonald
Flint United Flint, Michigan Dort Financial Center 4,421 2020 2021 Keno Davis
Jamestown Jackals Jamestown, New York Jamestown Community College 1,400 2015[c] 2019 Raheem Singleton
Lansing Pharaohs Lansing, Michigan Don Johnson Fieldhouse 3,600 2018 2022 Scott Newman
Toledo Glass City B.C Toledo, Ohio Student Health and Activities Center 1,200 2020 2022 Freddie Zamora
West Bakersfield Magic Bakersfield, California Riverlakes Ranch Community Center 200 2021 2022 Peter Pang
California Sea-Kings San Jose, California Silicon Valley Sports 200 2009 2021 Wallace Bryant
Salem Capitals Salem, Oregon Salem Armory Auditorium 3,887 2020 2022 Brian Stevens
SoCal Moguls San Diego North County Canyon Crest Academy 2021 2022 Olden Polynice
San Diego Sharks San Diego, California The Salvation Army East County Red Shield Community Center 2022 Brandon Cheeks
Vancouver Volcanoes Vancouver, Washington O'Connell Sports Center 2021 2022 Jeff Perrault
  1. ^ As the Rio Grande Valley Silverados in the ABA.
  2. ^ New franchise replacing the defunct team of the same name.
  3. ^ competed in Premier Basketball League for 2016, joined the North American Basketball League.

Future teams

Team City Arena Capacity Founded Joined Ownership
ATL 8IGH DAO Atlanta, Georgia 2020 2021 Chris Allison
Fayetteville Stingers Fayetteville, North Carolina 2022 2023 Ken Bishop
Central Florida Force Orlando, Florida 2021 2023 Sean Mills, Dr. Shalonda Hill, Jacques Pittman
Indy Express Indianapolis, Indiana Municipal Gardens 2020 2021 Chris Allison

Former teams

Team City Arena Seasons Notes
Columbus Condors Columbus, Ohio multiple 2020–2021 Not listed on website after season ended.
Houston Push Houston, Texas 2021 Not listed on website after season ended.
Indy Express Indianapolis, Indiana Municipal Gardens 2020–2021 Not listed on website after season ended.
Kansas City Tornadoes Kansas City, Missouri multiple 2018–2019 Reportedly backed out of participating in 2019 playoffs despite being second place; not listed on website after season ended.
Lewisville Leopards Lewisville, Texas Macedonia C.A.R.E. Center 2020–2021 Known as the Lewisville Yellow Jackets in the 2020 season; not listed on website after 2021 season ended.
Mesquite Desert Dogs Mesquite, Nevada multiple 2018–2019 Withdrew prior to the 2020 season citing travel costs as the last remaining west coast team.[20]
Midtown Prestige Wichita, Kansas 2021 Not listed on website after season ended.
New York Court Kings Queens, New York Elmcor Youth and Adult Activities Center 2019 Joined from the ABA; apparently ceased operations during the 2019 season.
Ohio Bootleggers Westerville, Ohio Otterbein University Rike Center 2018 Owners of the Bootleggers had been operating the Vancouver Knights since sometime during the 2018 season. The Bootleggers' NABL team then replaced the folded Ohio Cardinals midseason, but were not listed by TBL as a 2019 member. The Bootleggers relaunched as the Columbus Condors in 2020.
Ohio Cardinals Akron, Ohio LeBron James Arena 2018 Folded during the 2018 season.
Omaha's Finest Omaha, Nebraska Millard North High School 2021 Not listed on website after season ended.
Rochester Razorsharks Rochester, New York Blue Cross Arena 2018 Played the 2018 NAPB season. Change of ownership and left TBL.
San Diego Guardians San Diego, California 2021 Not listed on website after season ended.
San Diego Waves San Diego, California San Diego Mesa College 2019 Team's owner was stated to be relocating the team to an undecided location. San Diego Armada was announced as a replacement team for the 2020 season under new ownership.
Vancouver Knights Richmond, British Columbia Richmond Olympic Oval 2018 The Ohio Bootleggers' ownership took over operations of the Knights during the season and the Knights became a travel team. Ownership was transferred during the 2018 season to another unidentified group once the Bootleggers took over for the Cardinals' schedule. Was not listed by TBL as a 2019 member.
Vegas Ballers Las Vegas, Nevada Tarkanian Basketball Center 2021 Not listed on website after season ended.
West Coast Breeze San Marcos, California multiple 2021 Not listed on website after season ended.
Yakima SunKings Yakima, Washington Yakima SunDome 2018–2019 Went on hiatus for 2020.[21]

Seasons

Season Regular season champion Regular season MVP Playoff champion Playoff runner-up Playoff MVP
2018 Yakima SunKings Edwin Ubiles (Albany) Yakima SunKings Albany Patroons Renaldo Major
2019 Yakima SunKings Robert Duncan (Yakima) Albany Patroons Yakima SunKings Shadell Millinghaus
2020 Indy Express* Corey Taite (Tri-State) Season canceled due to COVID-19 pandemic
2021 Enid Outlaws Chance Comanche (Enid) Enid Outlaws Syracuse Stallions Chance Comanche

* Shortened season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, The Indy Express had the best overall record at the time of cancellation.

References

  1. ^ "FAQ – The Basketball League". Retrieved 2021-04-19.
  2. ^ "US Basketball News, Scores, Stats, Analysis, Standings". www.usbasket.com. Retrieved 2021-04-19.
  3. ^ "The Raptors Are New to Tampa's Basketball Scene. The Titans Aren't". The New York Times. January 20, 2021. Retrieved January 21, 2021.
  4. ^ "KU notebook: Ex-Jayhawk David Magley leaves Canada pro league for new venture in U.S." The Kansas City Star. July 2, 2017.
  5. ^ "The North American Premier Basketball League". NAPB.
  6. ^ "State of the NAPB: Magley shares thoughts on first half of season". NAPB. February 25, 2018.
  7. ^ "Meet the First Black Female Owner of a Male Professional Basketball League (Not a Team, But a League!)". Black News. July 17, 2018.
  8. ^ "Mesquite (Nevada) Desert Dogs coming back for 2019". Mesquite Local News. August 17, 2018.
  9. ^ "GOOD AND BAD NEWS FOR DESERT DOGS". Mesquite Local News. April 12, 2019.
  10. ^ "Patroons trying to make it work". Times Union. April 8, 2019.
  11. ^ "DAYTON FLIGHT TAKES OFF IN OHIO". The Basketball League. Retrieved September 2, 2019.
  12. ^ "Weekly Sports League and Franchise Report". Our Sports Central. 9 September 2019. Retrieved October 19, 2019.
  13. ^ "Weekly Sports League and Franchise Report". Our Sports Central. 2 September 2019. Retrieved September 2, 2019.
  14. ^ "Syracuse Stallions take it up a notch, move from ABA to 'The Basketball League'". CNY Central. May 1, 2020.
  15. ^ "PORTLAND STORM TO BECOME FULL ABA TEAM". ABA Live Action. April 18, 2020.
  16. ^ "San Diego Guardians Support Local Community as New Professional Basketball Team in TBL". The Basketball League. August 3, 2020.
  17. ^ April 1, Rueben WrightPublished; 2021. "Pro Basketball Returns to Shreveport". News Radio 710 KEEL. Retrieved 2021-04-19.((cite web)): CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  18. ^ "NBL Canada Returns to Celebrate 10th Season with Inter-League Play". OurSports Central. November 4, 2021.
  19. ^ "Professional minor league basketball team comes to Kokomo". Kokomo Perspective. August 11, 2020.
  20. ^ "Mesquite Desert Dogs November 18, 2019, Facebook post". Facebook. November 18, 2019.
  21. ^ "SunKings will not be returning for a third season". KIMA TV. October 29, 2019.