April 20, 2007 - Premier Basketball League (PBL)
(Chicago, IL)...The Premier Basketball League announced today the first four markets that will be charter members of the new professional basketball minor league. The Maryland Nighthawks and the Rochester RazorSharks will be the inaugural franchises in the PBL, with market commitments in Connecticut and Texas having been secured. The PBL will begin play in the winter of 2007-2008 and will be comprised of well-funded partners and teams from proven top-caliber franchises featuring teams in North American markets.
The Nighthawks, a standard bearer both on and off the court during their three years in professional basketball, will join a league prepared to take the combination of fast-paced basketball and family entertainment to a new level. The PBL will not only offer fans affordable sports entertainment, but will also re-establish the fan-player bond that was once the foundation of professional athletics.
Maryland received world-wide attention in 2007 when the organization signed 7\'9" Sun Ming Ming from China. The team was featured on every major television network and newspaper both nationally and internationally. The excitement was heightened by the appearance on NBC\'s Today Show by Maryland Nighthawks Co-Owner, Tom Doyle and Sun Ming Ming
The Nighthawks ownership group of Tom Doyle, Jeanette McCool and Ferhan Doyle stated, "we are very excited to begin play in the PBL and look forward to working with the league and the other fine organizations that will join us in this new venture."
The Rochester RazorSharks are owned by the Hrywnak brothers - Dr. Severko Hrywnak, Orest Hrywnak and Roman Hrywnak - and won the ABA championship in 2006 with a 30-4 record. The RazorSharks led all of minor league basketball in attendance the past two seasons, averaging over 4,000 fans per game at The Blue Cross Arena. Rochester has a 54-10 overall record in their two seasons of play as a professional franchise.
The RazorSharks were named the ABA\'s Organization of the Year in 2006 and Owner/General Manager Orest Hrywnak was named the league\'s Executive of the Year. Rochester Head Coach Rod Baker was named the league\'s Coach of the Year after leading the team to the league playoff championship in March of 2006. According to PBL Co-Founder Dr. Hrywnak, "having two tremendous organization like the Nighthawks and RazorSharks as cornerstones of the league will get minor league basketball fans excited about the plans for the new league as well as for the future of minor league basketball. Basketball fans should be anxiously awaiting announcements from additional top organizations in the coming weeks."
The PBL will host a series of national tryout camps around the country throughout the summer and fall months for professional players and college graduates. Locations and dates will be announced shortly.