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Anaheim Amigos: Wikis

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Anaheim Amigos were a charter member of the American Basketball Association, playing during the league's inaugural 1967-1968 season. After that season the team moved to Los Angeles, California and became the Los Angeles Stars for two seasons until moving to Salt Lake City, Utah and playing as the Utah Stars from 1970 until disbanding early in the 1975-1976 season, the league's last prior to the ABA-NBA merger in June 1976.

Contents

Origins

With the founding of the ABA on February 2, 1967, a charter franchise in Anaheim, California was awarded to Art Kim and James Ackerman for $30,000. A 'name the team' contest resulted in the Amigos name. The team played most of its home games at the Anaheim Convention Center. Five home games were scheduled elsewhere in California and three home games were scheduled in Honolulu, Hawaii. Al Brightman was the first head coach.

1967-1968 season

The Amigos' roster was highlighted by guards Les Selvage, Jeff Congdon and Steve Chubin, former NBA player Ben Warley and 7 foot center Larry Bunce. Other Amigos included Bob Bedell, John Fairchild, Warren Davis, Steve Kramer, Bill Garner, Randy Stoll and Herschell Turner. Chubin led the team in scoring and assists and was a fan favorite. Selvage led the league in three point field goal attempts. Warley led the team in rebounds and was an effective outside shooter. Congdon played well but was traded in mid-season to the Denver Rockets for Willis Thomas. Bunce did not live up to expectations despite his height, but played in the ABA All Star Game, as did Warley.

The Amigos were not successful on the court. They lost their first five games, including the first ever ABA game, a 134-129 loss to the Oakland Oaks on the road. After losing two thirds of their first 36 games Brightman was fired and replaced as head coach by Harry Dinnel. During the season the Amigos lost eight straight games in one stretch and had two other stretches of six losses each. The team finished the season with 25 wins and 53 losses, good for fifth place in Western Division but not good enough to make the playoffs.

Aftermath

The Amigos were not successful off the court either. They averaged 1,293 per home game and their games were broadcast on radio and sometimes on television. However, they lost approximately $500,000 on the season and were sold for $450,000 to James J. Kirst who moved the team to nearby Los Angeles where they became the Los Angeles Stars. After two seasons in Los Angeles the team relocated again and became the Utah Stars until folding in the middle of the ABA's final season (1975-76), just months before the June 1976 ABA-NBA merger.

External links

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