North American Basketball League (1964–1968)

The first North American Basketball League (NABL) was a professional basketball league. The NABL played four full seasons, 1964 to 1968, until the league folded after the 1967–68 season.

North American Basketball League
No. of teams5–8
CountryUnited States
Grand Rapids Tackers (1967–1968)
Muskegon Panthers (1966–1967)
Grand Rapids Tackers (1965–1966)
Grand Rapids Tackers (1964–1965)


The North American Basketball League began play in 1964–65 with five charter franchises, some of whom had been members of the Midwest Professional Basketball League (1961–1964): Chicago Bombers, Grand Rapids Tackers, Muskegon Panthers, Pontiac Nationals and Twin City Sailors.[1] Chicago and Grand Rapids had been members of the MWL.[2][3][4]

In 1965–66, the Holland Carvers replaced the Pontiac Nationals and the league remained at five teams.[3]

In 1966–67, the league expanded from five to eight teams, adding the Battle Creek Braves (former MBL city), Columbus Comets and Lansing Capitals.[1]

In 1967–68 the league lost the Muskegon Panthers and the Twin City Sailors. Pontiac returned and the league played in two divisions. Columbus, Battle Creek, Lansing and Pontiac were the Eastern Division and Chicago, Grand Rapids and Holland in the Western Division.[1]

Chicago finished last in each of the four seasons, with Grand Rapids taking three of the four league championships. Porter Meriwether (Chicago) led the league in Scoring in the first three seasons, averaging 28.1, 28.3 and 29.9 points. Art Crump (Battle Creek) averaged 29.6 in 1967–68 to lead the league.[1]

American Basketball League Franchises (1964–68)Edit

  • Battle Creek Braves (1964–68)
  • Chicago Bombers (1964–68)
  • Columbus Comets (1964–68)
  • Grand Rapids Tackers (1964–68)
  • Holland Carvers (1965–68)
  • Lansing Capitals (1965–68)
  • Muskegon Panthers (1964–67)
  • Pontiac Nationals (1964–65, 1967–68)
  • Twin City Sailors (1964–67)

Notable alumniEdit


  1. ^ a b c d "North American Basketball League Standings".
  2. ^ "Eastern Basketball Association Teams".
  3. ^ a b "Eastern Basketball Association Teams".
  4. ^ "Eastern Basketball Association Rosters".

External linksEdit