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Albuquerque Thunderbirds

Albuquerque Thunderbirds

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The New Mexico Thunderbirds were a professional NBA Development League
NBA Development League
The NBA Development League, or NBA D-League, is the National Basketball Association's official minor league basketball organization. Known until summer 2005 as the National Basketball Development League , the NBA D-League started with eight teams in the fall of 2001...

 minor league basketball
Basketball
Basketball is a team sport in which two teams of five players try to score points by throwing or "shooting" a ball through the top of a basketball hoop while following a set of rules...

 team which played from 2005-2011. Based in Albuquerque, New Mexico
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Albuquerque is the largest city in the state of New Mexico, United States. It is the county seat of Bernalillo County and is situated in the central part of the state, straddling the Rio Grande. The city population was 545,852 as of the 2010 Census and ranks as the 32nd-largest city in the U.S. As...

, the Thunderbirds first played their home games at Tingley Coliseum
Tingley Coliseum
The Tingley Coliseum is an 11,571-seat multi-purpose arena in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Originally built as a rodeo and horse show auditorium, it is located at 300 San Pedro Drive N.E....

 as the Albuquerque Thunderbirds, then played at the Santa Ana Star Center
Santa Ana Star Center
Santa Ana Star Center is an 7,000-seat multi-purpose arena in Rio Rancho, New Mexico, a suburb of Albuquerque. The arena is located near the intersection of Unser Boulevard and Paseo del Volcan...

 under the New Mexico Thunderbirds name for their final season of 2010-11.

On July 7, 2011, it was announced the Thunderbirds had been purchased by the Cleveland Cavaliers
Cleveland Cavaliers
The Cleveland Cavaliers are a professional basketball team based in Cleveland, Ohio. They began playing in the National Basketball Association in 1970 as an expansion team...

 and are moving to Canton, Ohio for the 2011-12 season, where they now play as the Canton Charge
Canton Charge
The Canton Charge is an NBA Development League minor league basketball team based in Canton, Ohio, United States. The Charge's NBA affiliate is the Cleveland Cavaliers, which also owns the team...

.

Franchise history



The team was formed as the Huntsville Flight and were established in Huntsville, Alabama
Huntsville, Alabama
Huntsville is a city located primarily in Madison County in the central part of the far northern region of the U.S. state of Alabama. Huntsville is the county seat of Madison County. The city extends west into neighboring Limestone County. Huntsville's population was 180,105 as of the 2010 Census....

 in 2001 as a founding member of the NBDL, the affiliate minor league of the NBA. The team ended its tenure in Alabama
Alabama
Alabama is a state located in the southeastern region of the United States. It is bordered by Tennessee to the north, Georgia to the east, Florida and the Gulf of Mexico to the south, and Mississippi to the west. Alabama ranks 30th in total land area and ranks second in the size of its inland...

 at the conclusion of the 2005 season after finishing 3rd in the overall NBDL standings at 27-21. They became the Albuquerque Thunderbirds the following season. In 2006, the team also won the D-League Championship game over the Fort Worth Flyers in their first year of existence in Albuquerque. They are directly affiliated with NBA teams the Cleveland Cavaliers, Indiana Pacers, and the Phoenix Suns. In the 2006-2007 season, along with the Tulsa 66ers (formerly the Asheville Altitude), the Austin Toros (formerly the Columbus Riverdragons), and the Florida Flame
Florida Flame
The Florida Flame were a NBA Development League team based in Fort Myers, Florida. Its logo represents a basketball on fire moving at high speed....

 (formerly the Charleston Lowgators), who are not playing for the 2006-2007 season. The Albuquerque Thunderbirds (formerly the Huntsville Flight) are playing in their sixth season in the National Basketball Association Development League.

For the 2010 season, the Thunderbirds moved from Tingley Coliseum
Tingley Coliseum
The Tingley Coliseum is an 11,571-seat multi-purpose arena in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Originally built as a rodeo and horse show auditorium, it is located at 300 San Pedro Drive N.E....

 to the Santa Ana Star Center
Santa Ana Star Center
Santa Ana Star Center is an 7,000-seat multi-purpose arena in Rio Rancho, New Mexico, a suburb of Albuquerque. The arena is located near the intersection of Unser Boulevard and Paseo del Volcan...

 and were re-named the New Mexico Thunderbirds. The team was then purchased by the Cleveland Cavaliers
Cleveland Cavaliers
The Cleveland Cavaliers are a professional basketball team based in Cleveland, Ohio. They began playing in the National Basketball Association in 1970 as an expansion team...

 and moved to Canton, Ohio, where they are now the Canton Charge.

Season-By-Season

Season Division Regular Season Playoffs
Finish Wins Losses Pct.
Huntsville Flight
2001–02 5th 26 30 .464
2002–03 8th 22 28 .440
2003–04 3rd 24 22 .522 Won Semifinals (Charleston
Florida Flame
The Florida Flame were a NBA Development League team based in Fort Myers, Florida. Its logo represents a basketball on fire moving at high speed....

) 108-100
Lost D-League Finals (Asheville
Tulsa 66ers
The Tulsa 66ers are an NBA Development League team based in Tulsa, Oklahoma and the minor league affiliate of the Oklahoma City Thunder. Their logo design is a basketball behind mountains with a road leading up to them, all on a U.S...

) 108-106
2004–05 3rd 27 21 .563 Lost Semifinals (Asheville
Tulsa 66ers
The Tulsa 66ers are an NBA Development League team based in Tulsa, Oklahoma and the minor league affiliate of the Oklahoma City Thunder. Their logo design is a basketball behind mountains with a road leading up to them, all on a U.S...

) 90-86
Albuquerque Thunderbirds
2005–06 2nd 26 22 .542 Won Semifinals (Florida
Florida Flame
The Florida Flame were a NBA Development League team based in Fort Myers, Florida. Its logo represents a basketball on fire moving at high speed....

) 80-71
Won D-League Finals (Fort Worth
Fort Worth Flyers
The Fort Worth Flyers is the name of a now defunct team of the NBA Development League minor league basketball expansion team based in Fort Worth, Texas. They began play in the 2005-06 season. The decision was made by the NBADL to not operate this team for the 2007-08 season.- Franchise history...

) 119-108
2006–07 Western 3rd 24 26 .480 Lost Semifinals (Colorado
Colorado 14ers
The Colorado 14ers were a team in the NBA Development League which began play in 2006-07. They were affiliated with the Denver Nuggets, New Jersey Nets and Toronto Raptors of the NBA. The 14ers played their home games at the Broomfield Event Center in the Denver suburb of Broomfield, Colorado. ...

) 130-100
2007–08 Southwestern 4th 22 28 .440
2008–09 Southwestern 3rd 24 26 .480
2009–10 Western 7th 18 32 .360
New Mexico Thunderbirds
2010–11 Western 9th 20 30 .400
Regular Season Record 233 265 .468 2001–2011
Playoff Record 3 3 .500 2001–2011

Current roster



Affiliates

  • Cleveland Cavaliers
    Cleveland Cavaliers
    The Cleveland Cavaliers are a professional basketball team based in Cleveland, Ohio. They began playing in the National Basketball Association in 1970 as an expansion team...

     (2006–2007)
  • Dallas Mavericks
    Dallas Mavericks
    The Dallas Mavericks are a professional basketball team based in Dallas, Texas. They are members of the Southwest Division of the Western Conference of the National Basketball Association , and the reigning NBA champions, having defeated the Miami Heat in the 2011 NBA Finals.According to a 2011...

     (2008–2010)
  • Indiana Pacers
    Indiana Pacers
    The Indiana Pacers are a professional basketball team based in Indianapolis, Indiana. They are members of the Central Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Basketball Association...

     (2006–2007)
  • Miami Heat
    Miami Heat
    The Miami Heat is a professional basketball team based in Miami, Florida, United States. The team is a member of the Southeast Division in the Eastern Conference of the National Basketball Association . They play their home games at American Airlines Arena in Downtown Miami...

     (2008–2009)
  • New Orleans Hornets (2009–2011)
  • Orlando Magic
    Orlando Magic
    The Orlando Magic is a professional basketball team based in Orlando, Florida. They play in the Southeast Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Basketball Association and are currently coached by Stan Van Gundy...

     (2010–2011)
  • Philadelphia 76ers
    Philadelphia 76ers
    The Philadelphia 76ers are a professional basketball team based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. They play in the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Basketball Association . Originally known as the Syracuse Nationals, they are one of the oldest franchises in the NBA...

     (2007–2008)
  • Phoenix Suns
    Phoenix Suns
    The Phoenix Suns are a professional basketball team based in Phoenix, Arizona. They are members of the Pacific Division of the Western Conference in the National Basketball Association and the only team in their division not to be based in California. Their home arena since 1992 has been the US...

     (2005–2008)
  • Sacramento Kings
    Sacramento Kings
    The Sacramento Kings are a professional basketball team based in Sacramento, California, United States. They are currently members of the Western Conference of the National Basketball Association...

     (2005–2006)
  • Seattle SuperSonics
    Seattle SuperSonics
    The Seattle SuperSonics were an American professional basketball team based in Seattle, Washington that played in the Pacific and Northwest Divisions of the National Basketball Association from 1967 until 2008. Following the 2007–08 season, the team relocated to Oklahoma City, and now plays as...

     (2005–2006)
  • Utah Jazz
    Utah Jazz
    The Utah Jazz is a professional basketball team based in Salt Lake City, Utah. They are currently a part of the Northwest Division of the Western Conference in the National Basketball Association...

    (2005–2006)

External links