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ABL, NBL, BAA, And To The Real Thing Before We End -- History of the NBA Finals Part 2

Updated on March 2, 2010

late 1940s

The NBA would begin by the end of this decade.

Television and returning veterans, Baby Boomers, new demographics, every sports league would change in order to stay relevant enough to capture the $$$$$$.

This would all contribute to a situation that would FOREVERMORE characterize and divide the NBA.

Think of the NBA when you were growing up on till today.

It very much looks like the East was the NFC and the West was the AFC, doesn't it?

Well this was due to the greatness of literally four players who all were great at the same time.

What characterizes the NBA throughout these hubs may indeed be another variation of the democrat vs. republican dynamic BUT...it cuts down the wrong organ.

It performed its' surgery in a way that this dynamic, no matter how hard it tries to interject itself, ends up bleeding out the veins and into the organ.

That reason is because the NBA is all about one thing and all the derivates come out of that --

Big city vs. little city.

The reason is because the little city teams...were the BEST ONES.

The big city teams wanted them.

Perhaps all you counterculturists in East Manhattan would be happy that...for these hubs...you're in the majority.

Sacramento and Portland? Fort Wayne? You're the true AFC of the NBA.

The AFC was so Democrat compared to the NFC Republican.

NFC teams have plenty of small towns.

The NFC in this freaking league would never accept Green Bay, Wisconsin for instance.

Big town vs. small town.

Remember this.

It goes on forever.

Sheboygen, Fort Wayne, Rochester, all these guys going into 1946 were stacked. Baltimore Bullets. St. Louis.

It started because the ABL wanted to bring the game to Canada because Canada had the most and best arenas already for hockey.

But basketball with white people simply didn't catch on.

And so the ABL became part of the standing NBL...officially fusing this discrimination into the heads of its' mom-and-pop owners.

Yet these small cities would be in the company of a particularly big one --

Chicago, Illinois.

The team was called the Gears.

The owner was a guy named Maurice White who was now a trillionaire for selling gears in World War II.

White would have a star player who was the biggest sonumabitch anyone had ever seen.

His name was George Mikan.

Many years later, people would say that the shot in 1987 that beat the Celtics in Game 4 was Magic Johnson's "junior skyhook", as if he got it from Kareem.

Nope.

The running hook shot executed to perfection...was a Mikan innovation.

People wonder...where were all the 7 footers back then?

Everywhere.

But to find one that's any good...is a statistical oddity.

To understand George Mikan and the NBA in this regard is to understand the difference between states rights and federal rights.

The NBL was like America.

The NBL didn't discriminate or segregate.

All black players are more then welcome.

Yet each individual team...is a state.

If they don't want to draft a black dude, if they don't want to scout a black dude, they don't.

Why is that?

Same reason you see alot of states in America with very few black people...state governments cater to the majority of the state.

When black players would enter the old league, they would do what the NFL does -- keep them out of the coaching carosel.

It was as simple as that.

They can't get power when they're younger, they're not going to be there to have it when they're older.

And the coaches carousel...heh-heh...starts with what each individual TEAM does.

That's not the league that's ordering a coach to befriend a white player. That's the coach that's doing that.

It was Maurice White's dream to start a 24-team league in which he would have all the say, and unfortunately for this new BAA, the racist element would come right along with it.

Urban areas, number one, weren't interested in slews of all white teams from small towns.

See?

Kind of like today if Sacramento played Indiana...ah? ah?

And so White, after withdrawing Mikan to begin this new league, has to forfeit all the players and watch them all dispersed amongst the prevailing league...

Which was ALSO in trouble.

It was chocolate meets peanut butter.

White had the big markets with no customers...the league had an assload of customers...who only paid 50 cents a ticket.

And so they would merge.

The NBL and BAA would become the NBA.

And Mikan, free, would get picked by the expansion team -- the Minneapolis Lakers...



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