Pittsburgh Condors

Pittsburgh Condors

Pittsburgh Condors

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The Pittsburgh Condors were a professional basketball team in the original American Basketball Association. Originally called the Pittsburgh Pipers, they were a charter franchise of the ABA. The team played their home games in Pittsburgh's Civic Arena.

Franchise history

Pittsburgh Pipers (1967–1968)

The Pipers were one of the ABA's inaugural franchises in 1967, and won the league's first championship with star player, ABA MVP (and future Hall-of-Famer) Connie Hawkins.; it remains Pittsburgh's only pro basketball championship. They shared the Arena with the city's expansion National Hockey League team, the Pittsburgh Penguins, and attracted fairly respectable gates by ABA standards, averaging 3,200 fans per game.

Minnesota Pipers (1968–1969)

Despite the strong attendance figures in Pittsburgh, the Pipers moved to Minnesota in 1968, becoming the Minnesota Pipers. When the Minnesota Muskies had trouble drawing people in the league's first season and moved to Miami to become the Miami Floridians, it left the state without an ABA club. The league's office was based in Minneapolis (home of league commissioner George Mikan), so the Pipers moved when a local attorney named Bill Erickson bought a majority share of the team. The Pipers fared no better than the Muskies had, however, and moved back to Pittsburgh after only one season, in 1969. In Terry Pluto's book on the ABA, Loose Balls, Pipers co-owner Gabe Rubin says he returned to the Steel City because he couldn't...
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