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University of Louisville News & Perspectives

Louisville interest in NBA franchise doubted

J. Bruce Miller, a former County Attorney, is out beating the drums again for a National Basketball Association franchise in Louisville, probably for about the third or fourth time in the last couple of decades.

Miller is joined this time around by a much younger group of proponents led by Zach Doyle who launched the “Bring the Sacramento Kings to Louisville” campaign, but apparently supports any effort to attract pro basketball.


The arguments are familiar, the ones about making Louisville a big league city, more than a college town, creating an economic boom, making a vibrant downtown area. As if communities like Oklahoma City and Memphis became world class cities after landing NBA franchises.

J. Bruce has already spent $60,000 in consulting fees in a few months, apparently with the encouragement of Metro Council member Dan Johnson. That’s without much of the community knowing city funds were involved.

Some of us were fans of the Colonels in the defunct American Basketball Association, quite disappointed actually when John Y. Brown, Jr. didn’t come up with the $2 million that would have made the Colonels an NBA team in the Seventies.

But we’ve long since gotten over the disappointment. Didn’t take long. You see the city already has a good basketball program, one to which we’re quite attached. We don’t like competition for the hearts and minds of local fans. There’s more than enough from Lexington already.

Professional basketball is boring, night in and night out, a real yawner until the playoffs arrive. But even the playoffs don’t get interesting until the final series. We wish you well, J. Bruce and Zach, but don’t expect any more support from UofL administrators, supporters and fans than previous efforts enjoyed.

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Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.

8 thoughts on “Louisville interest in NBA franchise doubted

  • December 9, 2010 at 10:51 pm

    Anybody that wants the NBA just ask Indianapolis,who got taken by the pacers not once but twice the NBA isn’t what it use to be I will take the college product anyday.

  • December 10, 2010 at 9:12 am

    Would love to see the NBA in Louisville, as long as someone could guarantee that it not negatively affect UofL. But no one can say that for sure, so, pass.

  • December 10, 2010 at 9:51 am

    The NBA is un-watchable. Professional sports teams suck every dollar they can from the cities that they reside. By and large pro players do not care about the fans or the city they play. Just seems like a bad fit for Louisville. No chance it will happen. Good point on Memphis and OK City. Had to think twice before I remembered that they even had teams in the NBA.

  • December 10, 2010 at 6:29 pm

    I see Miller is up to his old tricks again. He’d do anything to discredit and bring hardship to U of L. Just like his buddy Larry Clark. J. Bruce, if you read this, I prefer college sports over anything you could possibly bring here. I’m pretty sure I’m in the majority here. The NBA would be useless here. You, Dan Johnson, and Clark would be the only one’s to show up at those games.

  • December 10, 2010 at 9:34 pm

    Can’t wait till the Kings move into the Yum Center! UL fans don’t speak for all 1.1 million people in Louisville.

  • December 10, 2010 at 10:18 pm

    If somebody wants to bring something to town bring minor league hockey back I miss hockey. No thanks to the NBA. Nothing beats 2 great college teams on a saturday.

    • December 12, 2010 at 10:04 pm

      Neither does the 30% minority of bluenecks in Jefferson County. As you were…

      • December 12, 2010 at 10:05 pm

        meant for the blueneck above.

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