The NBA’s D-League problem

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Kevin Yeung at The Cauldron recently wrote about the problems facing NBA-level talent in the Developmental League, specifically that of Bruno Caboclo. As Yeung points out, Caboclo’s team, the Toronto Raptors, share one D-League team—The Fort Wayne Mad Ants—with 12 other NBA franchises! That’s like if almost every team in the National League shared the same minor league system in which to pull players. In the past few years more teams have acquired or built their own D-League franchises to develop their talent without the risk of losing them to the general NBADL pool. But it takes a lot of money to start a developmental team. And one of the hardest aspect is creating a team identity. So we figured to throw out a few suggestions for some of the D-less teams.

Atlanta Hawks

The Savannah CADS

Savannah Cad

Just a few hours north of the city of Atlanta is a sleepy town with an art college ripe for the efforts of a minor league basketball team. Combine the young frenzy of college students with basketball by naming the team after the local college!

Brooklyn Nets

The Greenpoint Gentrifiers

Brooklyn Hipsters

Sure, it’s a little on the nose, but the warped record building of Barclay Center could probably use another level of embarrassment before Mikhail Prokhorov cashes out of Brooklyn.

Chicago Bulls

The Highland Park Knee Replacements

Pray For Derrick Rose

Despite the Jordan Years, this may be the lasting legacy of the Bulls until some sweeping changes are made. But until then, the team can sit firmly in the shadow of its biggest albatross. #pray4rose

Indiana Pacers

The French Lick Larrys


Larry Bird is the most famous basketball player from Indiana and his place among the Pacers organization is paramount to their success. So the next logical step is to name their D-League affiliate after him and place the team in his hometown.

Los Angeles Clippers

The San Diego Locust

The Locust

A short jump from LA, the San Diego Locust can replicate the famously subversive grindcore outfit. Forget the controversy of advertisements on jerseys, how about the SDL playing in full bug costumes like the band? What other way to keep Donald Sterling rolling in his grave. Oh wait…

Portland Trail Blazers

The Hawthorne Alt Comics


When these D-Leaguers aren’t honing their skills to get into the NBA, they’re hosting open mics and have a really great Funny or Die channel, but they don’t get a lot of hits, because, you know, it’s all pretty political.