Obscure NBA team of the day: The Osh-Kosh All-Stars, who played 11 years in the National Basketball League, a forerunner to today’s NBA.
The All-Stars were the only team (of 37) to compete in every single season of the NBL’s existence, despite playing their home games in a junior high gymnasium! It’s hard to imagine an NBA team playing in any kind of venue that small today, but the sport of basketball was a little different back then. There were no luxury boxes, multi-million dollar endorsements, players with shoes, and certainly no ad-covered arenas.
The All Stars were quite successful, playing in the NBL Finals 6 times and winning two championships. They also played in 10 World Professional Basketball Championship Tournaments, winning it all in 1942. Osh Kosh regularly snapped up college stars year after year to fill out their roster.
Nearly 80 years before stars John Wall, Rajon Rondo, Terrence Jones, and numerous others cut their time with University of Kentucky Wildcats short to follow a pro career path, 6’4” All-American center Leroy Edwards did.
Edwards won 3 MVPs, led the league in scoring 3 times, and was named All-League First Team 6 times. Other notable players included Hall of Famers Alex Hannum, Bud Foster, and Branch McCracken.
When the NBL merged with the Basketball Association of America in 1949, the All-Stars folded, leaving Osh Kosh without a professional sports franchise to this day.