Weekly Sports League and Franchise Reportby Dan Krieger
September 10, 2012 - NBA Development League (D-League)
Can-Am League: After the independent Can-Am League last week terminated the Worcester (MA) Tornadoes franchise under its current ownership, a new investor has spoken to the league about creating a new team called the Worcester Phoenix to replace the Tornadoes in 2013. The Can-Am League is also apparently close to announcing a new team for Trois Rivieres (Quebec).
New York-Penn League: One of the tax-increment financing districts has been set up for financing the proposed new ballpark on the campus of West Virginia University in Morgantown that could also become home to a short-season Class-A team in the NY-Penn League.
Eastern League: The city of Ottawa has reached an agreement in principle with Beacon Sports Capital Partners to renovate and lease its baseball stadium, while Beacon Sports reports it has signed an agreement with an unnamed Double-A Eastern League team to move to Ottawa for the 2014 season.
South Atlantic League (SALLY): The city of Hagerstown (MD), which has been trying to build a new ballpark to keep the Hagerstown Suns of the low Class-A SALLY, received a $15 million anonymous donation to the project. The city of Winchester (VA) had been trying to lure the Suns with its own new ballpark proposal. The city of Columbia (SC), which had a SALLY team called the Capital City Bombers that moved to Greenville (SC) for the 2005 season, has been in contact with Minor League Baseball about obtaining a team for a proposed new stadium in the city.
Texas Winter League: The developmental TWL is planning a return with two separate sessions-one based in Fort Worth from October 20 through November 18, 2012, and one in Harlingen from January 31 through March 1, 2013. Managers and coaches from teams in the Texas-based United Division of the North American Baseball League will run the winter league teams. A similar four-team league called The Winter League was operated out of Harlingen by the former United League Baseball (ULB) in January and February 2007. The ULB tried to play another winter season in 2011, but the ULB had just become part of the NABL, which decided to consolidate its 2011 winter league in Arizona. Teams in the 2012 and 2013 TWL sessions will use nicknames from current United Division teams, former ULB teams, and previous winter league teams. Teams called the Cats, Colts, Dillas, and Prairie Dogs will play in the October-November session, while the Roadrunners, Thunder, Toros, and WhiteWings will play in the January-March session.
America West Baseball League: The proposed new AWBL, which plans to start play in 2013, has announced the logo for its new Fullerton (CA) Flyers team, but it still needs investors. A former Golden Baseball League team in Fullerton played as the Fullerton Flyers for two seasons (2005-06) before switching to the Orange County Flyers for the next four seasons (2007-10).
National Basketball Association Development League: The city of Santa Cruz (CA) has approved a permit to allow the NBA's Golden State Warriors to build a temporary 3,000-seat pavilion for its NBA D-League affiliate called the Santa Cruz Warriors. The NBA has yet to officially announce the move of the Dakota Wizards (Bismarck, ND) to Santa Cruz for the 2012-13 season.
National Basketball Association: The city of Virginia Beach (VA) has proposed construction of an 18,500-seat arena and apparently is targeting the NBA's Sacramento Kings.
Premier Basketball League: The PBL has announced plans to push the start of its sixth season back until March 1, 2013. The league usually started play around the last days of December or first week of January.
Independent Basketball Association: The IBA has posted the schedule for its 2012-13 winter season that will include ten teams playing from late October 2012 to mid-January 2013. The IBA plays both a winter season and a spring season. The league started play in 2011-12 with its first winter season and completed its first spring season in June 2012. Six of the ten teams from the 2012 spring season return for the winter season. For 2012-13, the league has added the Holland Dream, Dayton Air Strikers, Rockford Riverdawgs, and St. Louis Trotters for a total of ten teams. The new Holland Dream replaces the former Holland Blast team that left the International Basketball League (IBL) to join the IBA in 2011, but never played any IBA games. The Air Strikers played in the winter of 2011 as part of the Premier Basketball League (PBL), moved to the IBL for its 2011 spring season, and back to the PBL for its 2012 season. The Rockford Riverdawgs were part of the 2011-12 IBA winter season, while the St. Louis Trotters played a short five-game schedule as a "branding team" in the 2012 spring season.
National Basketball League of Canada: The city of Windsor (Ontario) has approved a lease agreement at the Windsor Family Credit Union Centre for the Windsor Express, a 2012-13 expansion team in the second season of the NBL-Canada. The NBL-Canada played with seven teams in its inaugural 2011-12 season and had previously announced Windsor as its eighth team for 2012-13.
Universal Basketball Association: The UBA announced it has added a new team called the Dayton Knights to its Eastern Conference for the upcoming 2012-13 season.
Liga Nacional de Baloncesto Profesional: Mexico's top basketball league, the LNBP, has started its 2012-13 season that runs from early September to mid-January. Of the 14 teams from last season, the league lost two teams called the Volcanes de Toluca and Aguilas Rojas de San Juan (San Juan del Rio, Queretaro), but added four teams called the Gansos Salvajes de La UIC (Universidad Intercontinental), Guerreros de Guerrero Cumple (Chilpancingo), Gigantes Estado de Mexico, and Osos de Guadalajara.
Indoor Football League: The IFL has announced that a new ownership group will operate the league's Allen (TX) franchise, which operated as the Allen Wranglers for the past two seasons (2011-12). The new ownership is holding a name-the-team contest to rename the team. The Wranglers joined the IFL when the Little Rock-based Arkansas Diamonds relocated to Allen for the 2011 season.
Professional Indoor Football League: The Charlotte Speed, which was originally announced as an expansion team for the Indoor Football League, is now listed as a member of the PIFL for its 2013 season.
United Football League: The four-team outdoor professional UFL, which is still trying to work out various financial and legal issues, has announced it will delay the start of its 2012 season by one week. The eight-week 2012 regular season will now start on September 26 and end on November 16.
Stars Football League: The outdoor summertime SFL, which recently completed its second season with only three Florida-based teams, has announced it is seeking investors for new teams in Akron (OH), Charleston (SC), Canton (OH), and Cleveland (OH).
Women's Arena Football League: The owner of the proposed new amateur WAFL also operates the league's Houston Lady Oilers franchise and plans to grow the league to 24 teams in two conferences. A team called the Orlando Eclipse is also listed as a member of the WAFL. These teams will be playing some exhibition games in 2012 with league-play to start sometime in the spring of 2013. WAFL teams will play a full-contact 8-on-8 indoor style similar to the Lingerie Football League.
Lady Arena Football League: The new lingerie-style women's indoor LAFL started, but never completed its inaugural 2012 season. Teams called the Houston Lady Panthers, Los Angeles Rideretts, New Orleans Lady Dollz, and Texas Mighty Diamonds each played about three of five scheduled games in May and June. It appears as though a proposed season-ending championship game scheduled in August was never played. The LAFL currently lists the Kansas City Tease as a fifth team and reports it will add teams in Atlanta and Las Vegas.
Sugar N Spice Football League: The new lingerie-style women's indoor SSFL completed its inaugural 2012 season with five Texas-based teams each playing three to five games from early June to early August. Teams included the Laredo Roses, Corpus Christi Mermaids, Austin Angels, Texas Cowgirls (San Antonio), and the McAllen Mystics travel team.
Midwest Junior Hockey League: After originally planning to start with 16 teams, the new MJHL, which is affiliated with the Amateur Athletic Union, announced it will start its inaugural 2012-13 season with ten teams. Seven of the teams are located in Michigan and the others are based in Illinois, Wisconsin, and Ohio.
North American Soccer League: The NASL has announced it will play a split season in 2013. The league's spring season will start in late March or early April and end on July 4. The fall season will start in late July or early August and end on November 2. The spring season champion will then meet the fall season champion to determine the NASL annual champion.
Professional Arena Soccer League: The PASL has announced a new expansion team called the Sacramento Surge will be part of the upcoming 2012-13 season. The owner of the Surge also owns the Sacramento Scorpions team in the lower-level Premier Arena Soccer League.
United Soccer Leagues - Major Indoor Soccer League: The MISL has announced the schedule for its upcoming 2012-13 season that will run from early November 2012 to early March 2013. The league will again have seven teams after losing the Norfolk SharkX from last season, but adding the new Chicago Soul. The league has eliminated the East and Central divisions and all teams will be listed in a single table.
National Lacrosse League: The indoor NLL has announced its 2013 season schedule that will run from January 5 through April 20, 2013. The league will have the same nine teams as last season and they will again be aligned in a four-team Eastern Division and a five-team Western Division.
Professional Lacrosse League: The new indoor PLL planned to start its inaugural season next Friday with four teams, but the Trenton-based New Jersey Rascals announced the team will not be ready to start and will go dormant until 2013. The league will move forward with the three remaining teams-the Charlotte Copperheads, Jacksonville Bullies, and Reading Rockets-with the season now starting next Saturday. An adjusted schedule will be announced in the near future.
Dan Krieger is the creator of the "The Leagueology Almanac 2011-12", which tracks the changes in league alignments, franchise movements and team nicknames in today's sports world. The publication is currently available at www.amazon.com.
NBA Development League Stories from September 10, 2012
- Iowa Energy Announce Open Tryouts for the 2012-2013 Season - Iowa Energy
- Weekly Sports League and Franchise Report - OSC Original by Dan Krieger
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