Friday, December 23, 2016


The BAA and NBL continued their competition into the 1948-49 season. The BAA suffered financial losses in their second season, but still had the big city markets. The NBL continued to have the best players. Both leagues agreed to honor each other's contracts and operate independently and equally, and even talked about having the champions of each league meet in a championship series. (This idea never materialized.)

The BAA looked to the NBL to try and lure their better teams into their fold. The Lakers balked at the idea, but the Fort Wayne Zollner Pistons and the Indianapolis Kautskys decided to jump from the NBL. (Because of BAA requirements against corporate names, the Fort Wayne Club had to drop "Zollner" and the Kautskys changed their name to the Jets.) After this announcement, the Lakers reexamined their options and decided to join the BAA, too. The Rochester Royals followed, and now the BAA stood at 12 teams, including two of the better squads (Lakers and Royals) of the previous season's NBL. They returned to a 60-game schedule, and the realignment of the two divisions with the new teams allowed for easier travel.

The departure of the four teams would prove to be a fatal wound for the NBL. They hastily recruited four teams to replace the four that left for the BAA, but with the loss of marquis players and teams, the NBL was doomed. The 1948-49 season was the last one for the National Basketball League.

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