Lively Tales About Dead Teams

Archive for the ‘Eastern Basketball Association’ Category

1966-1974 Hartford Capitols

leave a comment

1966 Hartford Capitols ProgramEastern Professional Basketball League (1966-1970)
Eastern Basketball Association (1970-1974)

Born: 1966
Folded: 1974

Arenas: 

  • Hartford Public High School
  • University of Hartford
  • Bloomfield High School

Team Colors:

Owners: 

EBA Champions: 1974

 

The Hartford Capitols were a weekends-only minor league basketball squad that toiled for eight seasons from the mid-1960’s to the mid-1970’s at a variety of high school and university gymnasiums.

The Capitols featured some terrific players, despite their ramshackle facilities.  Former Duke star Art Heyman, the #1 overall pick in the 1963 NBA draft, played for Hartford during the 1966-67 season. Heyman was the MVP of the 1963 NCAA tournament. Four years later, Heyman earned the princely sum of $60 per game to suit up for the Capitols.

Two-sport prodigy Gene Conley, who won a World Series with the Milwaukee Braves and three NBA titles with the Boston Celtics, played for the Caps and also briefly coached the team during the 1969-70 season. Future Pro Basketball Hall-of-Famer K.C. Jones even played a handful of games for the Caps in the mid-’60’s.

The Capitols’ finest seasons were their final two. The Caps earned back-to-back trips to the Eastern Basketball Association championships series in 1973 and 1974. They lost to the Wilkes-Barre Barons in ’73, but rebounded the following spring to defeat the Allentown Jets for the 1974 EBA crown. The club folded quietly a short time thereafter.

 

Hartford Capitols Memorabilia

 

In Memoriam

Former Capitols guard/small forward Art Heyman passed away on August 27, 2012 at age 71. New York Times obituary.

Capitols founder/owner Mark Yellin died on January 2, 2017 at age 83. Hartford Courant obituary.

 

Links

Eastern Basketball Association Programs

##

Written by Drew Crossley

February 20th, 2017 at 10:47 pm

1947-1971 Sunbury Mercuries

leave a comment

1969-70 Sunbury Mercuries ProgramEastern Pennsylvania Basketball League (1947-48)
Eastern Professional Basketball League (1948-1970)
Eastern Basketball Association (1970-1971)

Born: 1947 – EPBL expansion franchise
Folded: 1971

Arenas:

  • Sunbury High School
  • Selinsgrove High School
  • Fourth Ward School

Team Colors:

Owners:

  • Sunbury Sports Association, Inc.
  • ????-1971: Reynold Wolfe

EPBL Champions: 1951

 

The Sunbury Mercuries were a minor league basketball outfit that operated for 24 seasons in the small Eastern Pennsylvania city of Sunbury.  The Eastern League was a weekends-only league featuring teams from Pennsylvania a handful of neighboring states.

The team won their only league title in 1951, sweeping York Victory A.C. in a two-game series. The Mercuries folded following the 1970-71 season.

Notable Mercuries players included Jack Ramsay and Jack McCloskey, who both played for Sunbury during the 1950’s. Ramsay went on to win an NBA championship as Head Coach of the Portland Trailblazers in 1977. He entered the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in the Class of 1992.  McCloskey became General Manager of the Detroit Pistons in 1979 and was the front office architect of the Pistons’ back-to-back NBA championships in 1989 and 1990.

 

Sunbury Mercuries Memorabilia

 

Links

Mercuries Madness Was Hot“, Cindy Inkrote, The Sunbury Daily Item, March 22, 2009

Eastern Basketball Association Programs

##

Written by Drew Crossley

August 1st, 2016 at 8:51 pm

1976-77 Hartford Downtowners

leave a comment

Eastern Basketball Association (1976-1977)

Born: 1976
Folded: 1977

Arena: Bulkeley High School

Team Colors:

Owner:

EBA Championships: None

 

All-but-forgotten minor league basketball outfit that played just a single season in the Eastern Basketball Association in the winter of 1976-77. The Hartford Downtowners were the second Hartford-based entry in the Eastern League, replacing the more successful Hartford Capitols (1966-1974).

The club played its home games at Bulkeley High School and finished the 1976-77 season with a 5-19 record before quietly disbanding.

If you have any information or memorabilia from this team, please contact us.

 

==Links==

Eastern Basketball Association Programs

##

Written by AC

January 9th, 2016 at 8:00 pm

1970-1977 Scranton Apollos

leave a comment

1973-74 Scranton Apollos ProgramEastern Basketball Association (1970-1977)

Born: 1970 – Re-branded from Scranton Miners
Folded: 1977

Arena: Scranton Catholic Youth Center

Team Colors:

Owner: Arthur Pachter

EBA Champions: 1971 and 1977

 

Text coming soon…

 

==Scranton Apollos Programs on Fun While It Lasted==

Season Date Opponent Score Program Other

1972-73

1972-73 2/24/1973 @ Allentown Jets ?? Program Roster

 

==Links==

Eastern Basketball Association Programs

###

Written by AC

January 8th, 2016 at 4:09 am

1973-1975 Cherry Hill Rookies

leave a comment

Cherry Hill Rookies ProgramEastern Basketball Association (1973-1975)

Born: 1973
Folded: 1975

Arena: Cherry Hill Arena

Team Colors:

Owner: Rich Iannarella

EBA Championships: None

 

This short-lived minor league basketball outfit operated in Philadelphia suburb of Cherry Hill, New Jersey for two winters in the mid-1970’s.  Former Philadelphia 76ers executive Rich Iannarella purchased the Eastern Basketball Association franchise rights in 1973. It was a decision the promoter later characterized as “stupid” and “the worst financial mistake I ever made in my life” in an August 1977 interview with Delaware County Times columnist Gene Gomolka.

In February 1974, towards the end of the Rookies’ first season in the EBA, the wild former ABA All-Star John Brisker appeared briefly for Cherry Hill. Brisker played for the NBA’s Seattle Supersonics at the time, but didn’t get along with Sonics head coach Bill Russell.  Russell banished Brisker to Cherry Hill for three games in the middle of the 1973-74 season. Brisker poured in 58 and 51 points in the only two full games he played. Brisker’s career petered out in Seattle in 1975 at age 27. He vanished in Idi Amin’s Uganda in 1978 under mysterious circumstances and was never heard from again.

Rich Iannarella fled his failed venture after one season to become an executive with the Philadelphia Bell of the doomed World Football League. The Rookies went out of business less than a year later in 1975.

 

==In Memoriam==

John Brisker (Rookies ’74) was declared legally dead in 1985 seven years after his disappearance in Uganda.

 

==Links==

Eastern Basketball Association Programs

##

Written by AC

January 8th, 2016 at 3:07 am