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Maurice Podoloff

A man of impeccable character, Maurice Podoloff was instrumental in the development and success of the NBA. On June 6, 1946, Podoloff was appointed commissioner of the newly formed Basketball Association of America. Podoloff, who was already serving as president of the American Hockey League, became the first person to simultaneously lead two professional major leagues. In 1949, Podoloff negotiated the historic merger between the Basketball Association of American and the National Basketball League to form the National Basketball Association. As a lawyer with no previous experience, Podoloff’s great organizational and administrative skills were later regarded as key to keeping the league alive in its often stormy, formative years. Basketball commissioner Podoloff was fair to all teams and owners, regardless of their power. He served from 1949 to 1963 and through his foresight, wisdom, and leadership advanced fan interest and improved the overall welfare of the NBA.

Enshrined 1974
Born August 18, 1890 Elizabethgrad, RU
Died November 24, 1985
Contributor Stats
1st PERSON TO LEAD TWO
PROFESSIONAL LEAGUES
SIMULTANEOUSLY, BAA & AHL
SERVED AS NBA'S FIRST
COMMISSIONER, 1949-63
1954 NEGOTIATED NBA'S
FIRST T.V. CONTRACT
1954 ARRANGED FOR CONSTRUCTION
AND USE OF THE FIRST
24-SECOND CLOCK
NAMED NBA MVP AWARD
IN HIS HONOR
1949 NEGOTIATED MERGER
BETWEEN BAA AND NBL
TO FORM NBA