Daily News

American Basketball Assoc. Brings Franchise to Springfield

SPRINGFIELD — The Springfield Sting will be the first American Basketball Assoc. (ABA) team to call Springfield, the birthplace of basketball, its home when it commences play in November.

The organization will boast top talent from the Greater Springfield area and beyond. The Sting will join the ABA’s Northeast Division for the start of the 2016-17 season, alongside teams in Boston, Providence, New York, Long Island, and New Jersey.

The franchise will be owned by Zach Baru of Longmeadow. Baru’s past experience in sports and entertainment includes the Springfield Spirit of the National Women’s Basketball League, the Greater Springfield Pro-Am Basketball League, the Springfield Falcons of the American Hockey League, and the Miami Dolphins of the National Football League.

Dr. Steven Sobel has been hired as the team’s first general manager and head coach. Sobel, a former Division II star at the University of Hartford, has spent more than 40 years coaching collegiate and professional basketball teams and players. During the offseason, he helms the Springfield Slamm of the Greater Hartford Pro-Am Basketball League. Sobel is also a nationally recognized motivational speaker and author of The Good Times Handbook: Your Guide to Positive Living and Exciting Life.

“We are excited to bring professional basketball back to the city of Springfield. With Dr. Sobel at the helm, and potential supporters already reaching out, the possibilities for success here in the community are endless,” Baru said.

Further information is available on the team’s official website, springfieldsting.com.