North American Premier Basketball President and COO, David Magley, told those gathered for the press conference at the Owensboro Sportscenter this afternoon that he believes the NAPB could be bigger than the NBA in five years.
Not bigger in terms of bigger stars, bigger salaries, or bigger arenas. But in terms of more teams in more cities.
That’s because the NAPB is built upon the belief that there are many mid-level markets who could sustain a professional basketball team that the NBA would not consider coming to.
Magley and league owner, Dr. Sev Hrywnak, who also owns the Premier Basketball League (which the former Kentucky Mavericks were associated) formed the NAPB to create an opportunity for professional basketball with a hometown feel.
Owensboro is the fourth market to participate in the newly formed league, along with Seattle, Washington; Rochester, New York (Razorsharks); and Albany, New York. Magley hopes to name another four in the next month.
But let’s cut right to the chase. Owensboro Living asked Magley point blank after the press conference the question that will undoubtedly be on our readers’ minds: “Owensboro has had multiple promises of professional basketball teams. We’ve had several of these announcements where a team comes in and is gone in a season or two. How do we know you won’t be gone in a year?”
Here was Magley’s response:
“Well, you don’t. Unless you have the faith in what we’re doing and unless you take the time to study what hasn’t worked. The reason most of these other leagues fail is they don’t have a good business model or they don’t have good ownership.”
Magley then laid out several reasons he believes the NAPB and the Owensboro team will be around for a long time.
“What we did is adopt a good business model. We are only allowing team owners in who can afford to be here. We’re bringing consistency across the league. Every team plays the same amount of games and uses the same pay scale so everything is the same. That way competition is consistent. There are hundreds of coaches that will coach for what we’re going to pay and thousands of players that would play for what we’re going to pay. So that’s what makes the business model. That’s what makes us unique is we’re bringing in a good business model across the league. Each team requires two full-time positions. Each team needs to have a business manager and a GM/Head Coach. You can’t afford to have lots of employees. It’s a very tight model that we’ve designed for all of our ownership so that they can build it as it grows. That’s the simple business part of why this is going to work and why other teams and leagues have failed in the past.”
Magley continued, “Honestly, I wish I was following me because I think we’re building something that is going to be really stable so people could say it’s like ‘that league.’ But instead there was the CBA, a 20-year gap, and now me. And in that 20-year gap there were a bunch of acronym leagues that didn’t last. Our owners are paying $150,000 to own a team and January 1 that goes to $400,000. We want this to be at a million in five years. We’re building a legitimate business model that you invest in this and you can make a return in season and you can make a major return if you ever sell your franchise because we’re going to do it the right way.
This league could be filled with guys from the NBA, former NBA D-League players, names you recognize, players from UofL, UK, Indiana, to go along with your Kentucky Wesleyan level players that some are just as good as those D-1’s that never had the opporunity for whatever reason. So I think it’s going to be a fun mix.” – David Magley, NAPB President & COO
Why Owensboro? The same reason the Mavericks relocated here. The fan support for basketball and the history of the Sportscenter.
Here are some more details about the NAPB explained during the press conference:
- the league will use consistent, top-quality venues (similar to the Sportscenter, not rec centers, etc)
- all venues must have TV or live stream capabilities
- former director of Referees from NBA is director of refs for NAPB
- teams will be active and engaged in the community
- players will be chosen by the coaching staff
- there will be two combines trying out over 1,000 interested players
- already have signed 18 players of the 100 necessary for league start
As for the team based in Owensboro:
- the coach will likely be named next week
- the name for the team will be decided by online vote at owensborobasketball.com .
- schedule will have 32 games. 16 home. 16 away. Average a game a week. Most games at the Sportscenter will be on Sundays.