SPRINGFIELD, MA June 29, 2009 – The National Basketball Association today announced that NBA Springfield will be affiliated with the New York Knicks, the Philadelphia 76ers and the New Jersey Nets during its inaugural season.
NBA Springfield will be one of two NBA Development League teams to have three NBA affiliates during the 2009-10 campaign, increasing the chances for NBA players to be assigned to Springfield and take the court at the MassMutual Center. NBA teams are allowed to assign players in their first or second NBA season to their NBA D-League affiliate.
“I’m excited to be affiliated with three NBA franchises that each are so close to the NBA D-League’s newest East Coast team,” NBA Springfield principal owner Michael Savit said. “We’re very pleased to have the opportunity to work with all three NBA affiliates, and we look forward to welcoming their young prospects to Springfield to help aid in their development.”
Each of the three affiliates will be within a 250-mile radius of Springfield. Last season, the NBA D-League affiliates for both the Knicks and Nets were two time zones away.
“I am a true believer in the NBA D-League and it’s great to be affiliated with the Springfield franchise,” New York Knicks President of Basketball Operations Donnie Walsh said. “We have had a special relationship with the league, and we plan to continue that because it has great value to us.”
“We are very pleased to be affiliated with the Springfield entry in the NBA D-League and look forward to an excellent working relationship,” New Jersey Nets General Manager Kiki Vandeweghe said.
The affiliation also presents an operational match for the 76ers, who play their home games at the Wachovia Center. Both the Wachovia Center and the MassMutual Center are members of the Global-Spectrum Facility Management Company. Global-Spectrum is a subsidiary of Comcast-Spectacor, which owns the 76ers.
"With the announcement of Springfield as our new NBA D-League affiliate, we will continue to put a premium on having a resource of this nature in such close proximity to our team," 76ers Senior Vice President and Assistant General Manager Tony DiLeo said. “The NBA D-League is always a key element of our scouting and player development initiatives and we are excited to begin a new relationship with Springfield.”
NBA Springfield was announced as the NBA D-League’s second team in New England during a press conference at the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame on March 31. With a nickname and logo slated to be unveiled on June 30, NBA Springfield will play a 50-game schedule, including 24 home dates at the MassMutual Center, in November.