Over the course of its nine-year existence, the ABA had its share of bizarre situations. But the brief saga of the Baltimore Claws had to rank near the top of that list. In the summer of 1975, the Memphis Sounds franchise reached the end of the line in Tennessee after five seasons of utter futility. The team was sold to a shadowy group of seven Maryland businessmen, who immediately moved it to Baltimore.
Things did not go well from the very start. On August 24, 1975, ABA Commissioner Dave DeBusschere yanked the team away from the Maryland investors, ruling that the team was "undercapitalized." He awarded the franchise to a new group of investors in Memphis. Unbelievably, though, the Memphis group withdrew the very next day. DeBusschere then handed the club back to Baltimore. A $250,000 down payment to the ABA by the Baltimore group seemed to appease the ABA for the moment.
The new owners first named their team the "Baltimore Hustlers," and sent out a season ticket brochure using that moniker.
When the ABA league office got wind of the "Hustlers" nickname, it strongly objected. The ABA higher-ups felt that the name "Hustlers" had too many negative connotations, and strongly encouraged the Baltimore owners to choose another nickname. Soon after this directive, the "Baltimore Hustlers" quietly became the "Baltimore Claws." A second season ticket brochure was sent out, with the new nickname.
This Gildan Unisex Basic Softstyle t-shirt is made of a thicker, heavier cotton, but it's still soft and comfy. And the double stitching on the neckline and sleeves add more durability to what is sure to be a favorite!
• 100% ring-spun cotton • Sport Grey is 90% ring-spun cotton, 10% polyester • Dark Heather is 65% polyester, 35% cotton • 4.5 oz/y² (153 g/m²) • Pre-shrunk • Shoulder-to-shoulder taping • Quarter-turned to avoid crease down the center