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Knicks to announce name of D-League team

New York Knicks officials will announce the name of the team’s new NBA Development League affiliate at a press conference Wednesday at the Westchester County Center.

The as-of-yet-unnamed team, which will begin playing its home games at the County Center this season, is hosting an open house Wednesday night at which businesses and individuals can pick season ticket packages. A basketball clinic and a performance by the Knicks City Dancers will be among the attractions, but the event will be capped by the announcement of the new team’s name and an unveiling of its logo.

The NBA Development League and The Madison Square Garden Company (MSG) today announced that MSG has acquired the right to own and operate an NBA D-League team that will play in White Plains, NY.  The announcement was made at the Westchester County Center in White Plains.

Officials pose at the March announcement of the creation of a Knicks D-League team to play in Westchester County.

The Knicks, on the D-League team’s website, asked the community for team name suggestions.

Prior to their solicitation, the team filed for trademarks on five potential names, according to The Wall Street Journal. Those names were The New York 914s, The New York Empire, The New York ‘Bockers, The New York Hutch and The New York Plainsmen – the last of which seems to be a play off the city of White Plains, where the County Center is located.

It’s unclear if the team name will be one of those options or another suggested by a fan during the open suggestion period.

Madison Square Garden Co., which owns the Knicks, plans to use the new D-League team to develop players, coaches and trainers. The D-League is emerging as the NBA’s answer to the minor leagues in baseball. The Knicks affiliate will be the 18th in the league and the seventh owned and operated by an NBA team (14 NBA teams have direct affiliates in the D-League).

Many sportswriters expect that within a decade, the D-League will expand to 30 teams, with each NBA club having ownership or direct affiliation with a lower league club.

Westchester County, which owns the County Center, estimated it could gain between $48,000 to $288,000 per season in ticket sales, parking, concessions and merchandise from the deal with the new club.

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About The Author

Mark Lungariello
Contributing Editor

Mark Lungariello is a contributing editor to the Westchester and Fairfield business journals. He also writes features for WAG magazine and hosts "Say Hey," which airs each Friday on New Rochelle's WVOX Radio. Lungariello graduated from Columbia Journalism School and has won New York Press Association awards as an editor, columnist and reporter.

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