Rainmen Leave ABA Effective as of Today, Will not participate in Playoffs, Pursuing D-League Membership

Big news, pretty much exactly what I expected:

The Rainmen have officially left the ABA and will not be going to Quebec for the ABA Play Offs. 

In addition, Livingston will be putting together a team of professionals and investors to investigate joining the NBA D-League.   More details and my thoughts after the jump:

No word on how close they are to being accepted into the D-League but:

1)  I know that Livingston has had close contact with the D-League and various D-League and NBA owners over the last few weeks trying to facilitate a move to North America’s premier minor league.

2)  The Raptors publically have made it very clear that they want a team in southern Ontario.

That said, I doubt Livingston would announce this if there wasn’t at least a chance of this going through.  The D-League announced a team in Erie, PA earlier this week so it is clear that they’re going to have to put more teams in the East to accomodate the Cleveland affiliated club.

D-League is obviously best case scenerio.  Halifax likes to think that we’re a big deal and lots of fans won’t go out to see a game unless they think it’s a premium product.  The D-League has the best minor league players, the NBA name and the off chance of having an NBA player sent down for a few weeks.  If we could be affiliated with the Raptors or Celtics it would add instant history to the club.  I just hope we don’t end up with a New Jersey affiliation… that would be bittersweet and so uncomfortable.

If the team joined the D-League I think we can assume that we would see a totally different team on the court.  The only players I can imagine coming back would be Silverhorn, Crookshanks and maybe the Clark brothers.  And I am not convinced that any of those guys would definately make the team or get any playing time at all.  That said:  Maybe we’d get Anderson back!


13 thoughts on “Rainmen Leave ABA Effective as of Today, Will not participate in Playoffs, Pursuing D-League Membership

  1. However, if we are accepted in to the NBDL, that will likely spell the end of many of the Rainmen’s time in Halifax. Crookshank might be around to warm the bench, but we would have to say good bye to KD, Silverhorn and all the rest. That would be tough.

  2. Yeah, I doubt the NBA D League will be coming to Halifax. The team will be playing in Hamilton next year. Book it.

  3. Damn, I don’t know how to feel about this one. I love the decision to leave the ABA, and the attempt to move to the NBADL is definitely the right way to go, so kudos to Levingston on both decisions.

    Naturally, my big concern is what happens to the HALIFAX Rainmen? Mr. Levingston initially tried to get an ABA team in Hamilton, he has ties to the Raptors, and the Raptors want southern Ontario. There may not be a better pound-for-pound basketball city in the country than Halifax, but given all of those factors, can we reasonably expect the team to stay in our tiny outpost? On top of that, the Raptors may have a sour taste in their mouths from the last time they played in the Metro Centre back when they played Vancouver in the preseason and only 8000 people showed up (big number, certainly not a sell-out).

    Is this the end? I sure hope not.

  4. So did anyone here end up attending the press conference? I wanted to see if I could drop in, but unfortunately was told by the desk clerk on the 2nd floor that the announcement was indeed NOT open to the general public.

  5. Well, needless to say my heart is broken.
    How could you pull me into that magical Waterworld (parallel to movie intentional) only to let me down like this?

  6. I’m sorry, Hilary. Had I know that Halifax’s love affair with the ABA would be so fleeting I never would have tempted you by inviting you to a game. The Montreal Royal will most like stay in the ABA, though. So you can go watch them. They have much lower production values which means more entertainment.

  7. My guess is that “pursuing D-League” is the most forgiving way to way “we have left the ABA to join another league.

    Lets face it…. the Rainmen are not going to just leave the ABA with no where to go.

    I wish them the very best with whatever venture they pursue.

  8. I know for a fact that the Rainmen have gotten confirmation from another one of the non-Dleague minor leagues that they are welcome if the d-league thing doesn’t pan out.

    You have to remember that the D-League has flat out refused to talk to organizations who are members of other leagues (i.e. the Millrats), so leaving the ABA is the only way for Levingston to communicate officially with the NBADL.

    That said, I am not holding my breath for the D-League next year. I think we’ll end up in the PBL.

    The best case/most realistic scenerio would be for the PBL and CBA to merge and use the CBA name and drop their deadweight teams. Then have Vermont, Quebec, Manchester, Atlanta, Texas and Halifax join the new CBA. Basically take the best teams from the three leagues, use the best brand from the three leagues and create a viable third tier behind the NBA and the D League, leaving the ABA as undisputed fourth tier of minor league basketball.

  9. As VT Frost Heaves fans, we thoroughly enjoyed our trips to Halifax this past year. The Rainmen organization has to be applauded for putting a decent product on the floor in their first year. We wish Eric Crookshank the best of luck – enjoyed getting to know him…..hmmmm, maybe he can be a frost heave next year?

    It’s regrettable some ABA teams thought going to Halifax was “out of the way”. It’s a beautiful city and with the invention of the airplane, easy to get to. We’ll miss clanging our bells in Halifax!!!

  10. I read somewhere on OSC that PBL and CBA are merging and that Texas has already been playing as Dallas in the CBA, so it sounds like your scenario is quite likely.

    As for the D-League, I like Mr. Levingston’s plan to approach them to see if we can join, with the fallback position of joining another league if it doesn’t work out with NBADL. My SWOT analysis of joining the D-league lays out the plusses and minuses (as I see them) of trying to join the D-League. The bottom line is the Rainmen need other teams in the Northeast to be part of whatever league we eventually join, to make it viable in the long-term.

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