We look how the ABA-NBA merger came about and how the ABA teams paid dearly to get into the NBA in the latest episode of Over and Back's Basketball Mysteries of the 1970s.
We are joined by basketball historian Adam Criblez (@AdamCriblez) to look at the chaotic final 1975-76 season for the ABA with teams folding and the schedule having to be constantly reworked, how the original 1950 NBL-BAA merger that formed the NBA affected this one, prior close calls to a merger and why they didn't work out, how there were many massive obstacles to overcome to make a merger happen, how there was little buzz about a merger coming heading into the NBA owners' meetings, how St. Louis Spirits owners Ozzie and Daniel Silna ended up with the greatest deal in sports history, and how Kentucky Colonels owner John Y. Brown ended up sitting pretty as well.
We also discuss how a night of drinking between Nets owner Roy Boe and Knicks owner Mike Burke may have turned the tide in the merger talks, who actually deserves the credit for getting the merger done, how the four ABA teams (Nuggets, Pacers, Nets and Spurs) ended up being treated as expansion teams, and how the ABA players felt about their league coming to an end.
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