In 1967, one of the ABA’s charter franchises was awarded to a group in Kansas City, Missouri headed by Southern California businessman James Trindle. However, Trindle was unable to find a suitable arena in the Kansas City area. League commissioner George Mikan suggested moving the team to Denver. After agreeing to name Denver native and former NBA player Vince Boryla ...
The team’s first year on the court (1967 – 1968) had to be considered a successful one, especially attendance-wise. Unlike other ABA teams, Denver started out very slow at the gate. Only 2,748 fans attended the Rockets’ first home game against the Anaheim Amigos. But, attendance picked up over the course of the season, as Denver residents gradually warmed up ...
After Denver’s playoff defeat at the hands of the Oaks, Denver’s front office knew it had to improve the team’s talent level. The Ringsbys contented themselves (and shocked the basketball world) by signing an undergraduate phenom from the University of Detroit: Spencer Haywood. The 6’9″ Haywood had played only one year of junior college ball (at Trinidad Junior College in ...
Haywood’s spectacular 1969 – 1970 rookie season gave Rockets fans cause for optimism for the 1970 – 1971 season. But, the season turned out to be a disaster for the franchise. In the fall of 1970, Haywood played only two exhibition games for the Rockets (scoring over 40 points in each). After those two games, he bolted the team because ...
The original Denver team nickname was the Rockets after the owners shipping business. Their first logo is basically the companies logo. The Ringsby company logo is still on a building near the Pepsi Center, home of the Nuggets. The final logo for the Rockets before they changed nicknames to the Nuggets was a cartoonish logo of a rocket dribbling a basketball. The ABA did have a flare for their logos and the final Rocket logo does have some style.
1976 – Present / National Basketball Association
1967 – 1976 / American Basketball Association
1974 – Present / Denver Nuggets
1967 – 1974 / Denver Rockets
Rockets - In 1967, one of the ABA’s charter franchises was awarded to a group in Kansas City, Missouri headed by Southern California businessman James Trindle. However, Trindle was unable to find a suitable arena in the Kansas City area. League commissioner George Mikan suggested moving the team to Denver, Trindle moved his team to Denver as the Denver Larks, named after the Colorado state bird. Trindle sold a two-thirds controlling interest to Denver trucking magnate Bill Ringsby for $350,000. New owner Ringsby then renamed the team the Rockets, after his company’s long-haul trucks.
NBA Championships 0
ABA Championships 0
1999 – Present / Pepsi Center
1975 – 1999 / McNichols Sports Arena
1967 – 1975 / Denver Auditorium Arena
2014 – Present / Ann Walton Kroenke
2000 – 2014 / Stan Kroenke
1997 – 2000 / Liberty Media
1989 – 1997 / Peter Bynoe, Bertram Lee, and Comsat Video Enterprises
1985 – 1989 / Sidney Shlenker
1978 – 1985 / Red McCombs
1972 – 1978 / Frank Goldberg and Bud Fischer
1967 – 1972 / James Trindle and Bill Ringsby
To qualify as a greatest player for this team, the player must have played one season for this team. If not, we will remove the player.
2 / Alex English
12 / Lafayette “Fat” Lever
33 / David Thompson
40 / Byron Beck
44 / Dan Issel
55 / Dikembe Mutombo
432 / Doug Moe
*Blue is this team’s history