NBA: Should Each Team have a G-League affiliate in the same city like the Pistons?
Having team synergy is necessary for team sports to having success. For this reason, I believe that it cannot hurt for NBA teams to have their G-League affiliated team within close proximity. Many minor league baseball and hockey teams play close by and can be used if a player is coming off an injury or is trying to insert themselves back into the lineup to play with the major league team. Even in soccer, teams have academies to develop talent. I watched a video recently about a European club called Ajax in Amsterdam that train kids, who want to play the sport at a young age. A house divided against itself cannot stand, so it is good to have more people and resources close by to help.
Just five of the twenty-seven teams that are affiliated with an NBA team are not located within the same state or province. Only two teams in the Association do not have an exclusive affiliate. It would not surprise me at all if those teams, the Denver Nuggets and Portland Trail Blazers, were to have an affiliate down the road. The New Orleans Pelicans, who were with Birmingham, will have the BayHawks from Erie, Pennsylvania as their G-League affiliate.
Success in both NBA and G-League
Golden State and Cleveland, who met in the NBA Finals the past four years, also have seen their respective minor-league partners do well. The Santa Cruz Warriors won the G-League championship when the Golden State Warriors won the NBA title in 2015. The Canton Charge, the Cleveland Cavaliers affiliate, have been in Ohio since 2011. They won the championship in 2006 while known as the Albuquerque Thunderbirds. The Charge trace back to 2001 when the Flight played in Huntsville, Alabama as charter members.
What do you think? Should NBA teams’ G-League affiliates be in the same city or close by? Or is it best if they aren’t in the same part of the state or region of the United States or Canada?