Syracuse Herald- Armory Game For Tonight Is Cancelled

There will be no basketball game at the Armory tonight. Ogdensburg was scheduled to play here but the team cancelled and Manager Wilbur Crisp was unable to secure a competent substitute attraction. The All-Syracuse team will play no home games next week but will have two out of town games, meeting the Cortland Sodality team in Cortland on Thursday and playing the Rochester Centrals in Rochester on Saturday.


Syracuse Herald Journal- Anderson And Syracuse Fives Battle At Armory

Fifth Place Clubs Try For Climb; Each Hopes For Playoff Spot A pair of fifth place quints each battling for a fourth place finish and a playoff spot in rival divisions of the National Basketball League will face each other tonight at the Jefferson Street Armory when the Anderson Packers meet the Syracuse Nationals. Anderson is in fifth spot in the Western Division of the loop, one half game behind fourth place Sheboygan and one more game behind Chicago while Syracuse, fifth in the list, trails Moline and Toledo. Last night Anderson edged Toledo 55-51. While the Nats are host to the Packers tonight the Moline Blackhawks are at home meeting the second place Western Division Indianapolis squad. Indianapolis sill has a chance to capture the Western Division pennant. A loss for Moline and a Syracuse triumph tonight would put Syracuse into fourth place one half game ahead of the Blackhawks. Syracuse holds a 2 to 1 game edge over the Packers having split in two games at Anderson and winning the lone start here. This will mark the final game of the year between the two clubs. Leading the visitor’s invasion will be Howie Schultz and Charley Shipp. Schultz, a first baseman for the Brooklyn Dodgers baseball team had received permission from that club to finish out the season with Anderson and he has been one of the leading scorers of his team and of the league. Shipp is a former member of the Fort Wayne Zollners and also has had National League experience with the Oshkosh All-Stars. He played previously with the Akron team. Jerry Rizzo, Syracuse player coach announced after a drill at the Armory yesterday that the Nats would line up with Chaney and himself at forwards, Novak at center, with Nelmark and Sharkey at guards. In reserve the team will have Jack Dugger, Kenny Exel, Bob Nugent and Johnny Gee. Following tonight’s encounter the Nats will have but five games remaining playing Fort Wayne Saturday, Rochester Monday, Detroit Tuesday, and Sheboygan Wednesday and Thursday. All of the games except the Detroit encounter will be on the Armory floor here.


Syracuse Herald American- Why The Reawakened Interest In Syracuse Pro Basketball?

Big Turnout Expected Today For Nats-Warriors Game And Billy Gabor Ceremonies

Congratulations to Syracuse’s professional basketball champions! What has happened to the Syracuse Nats? Why is it they suddenly spurted ahead of the field in the pennant chase? What rekindled spectator interest in the team? Answers to these questions are numerous but in the main narrow down in these principal factors: No. 1- The team is working as a unit, displaying the spirit and will to win first evidenced in the days when Coach Al Cervi and Bill Gabor sparked the club at the State Fair Coliseum. (Gabor will be honored at today’s game after announcing he has been forced to retire from play due to illness which sidelined him early this season.) No. 2- Probably the most important factor, for the first time since Jan. 1, 1954, the clubs looks to be able to go all the way. Everyone chipped in on this road trip. Kerr and Dolph were tremendous in New York, Farley and King were big men in Elkhart, Lloyd, Rocha and Seymour gave us a boost in Fort Wayne, and Kerr and Lloyd came right back again in Milwaukee. The usually pessimistic leader added: “I feel that we can go on to win the overall title and look for New York to beat out Boston for second place. Out west they adopted a slogan in newspapers I’d like to carry on right through the playoff when they said: ‘Look out the Nats are coming.’ Believe me, we are not coming, we are here!” It has been a rough uphill road for the Syracusans and they are far from out of the red this year. In fact, back on Jan. 1, the projected dollar loss for the community-owned venture this year was set at $50,000. This figure has been the squad at near full strength, physically and numerically. No. 3- The crop of this year’s rookies has improved steadily so that there is no noticeable letdown when substitutes enter the game. No. 4- There has been a decided concentration on defense. No. 5- CROWDS stated to noisily back the team after club authorities decided to switch to afternoon play on Sunday and offered special inducements to children. Today, as the club prepares to entertain Philadelphia, there is still a chance it will capture the overall pennant. Fans aren’t satisfied with this goal. They want the playoff title, an honor that eluded two previous Nat aggregations by the narrowest of margin. Cervi on his arrival home from Milwaukee yesterday gave every reason for the fans to be optimistic in this respect when his first words to a small but enthusiastic group of rooters was: “This is the best chance we’ve ever had to go all the way.” The team financial stress has been reduced considerably and may be sliced even more considerably today when another fine turnout is expected to honor Gabor. As recently as Feb. 4 the team was steeped in gloom. The season started well with the club winning three of its first four games, two of them away from home. Then disaster hit. Gabor was sidelined with infectious hepatitis. He never returned. Wally Osterkorn followed Gabor on the injured or sick list for a leg operation, and he has just started to function on a part time basis once again. George King was sidelined with a leg injury for seven games, Dolph Schayes suffered thigh injuries, Connie Simmons, secured as a replacement for Gabor, was forced to quit with a dislocated back, and a series of virus colds struck the club. It was nothing new for Cervi to tutor a crippled outfit. He led the famed bandage brigade of last season to the final game of the playoff before bowing even though three starters wore casts. But even Cervi was unable to cope with the series of blows received. He commented during midseason: “In all my years I’ve never experienced anything like this. This is my worst year in basketball.” But at least one of the losses boomeranged into one of the luckiest moves in Syracuse pro cage history. When Simmons left, there was no alternative remaining but to use rookie Johnny Kerr more frequently. Fearing Kerr would not fill the shoes, the Nats went to extreme means to add Jim Tucker on a part-time basis. Kerr has developed into one of the best rookies of the season. He is now considered a member of the staring five. Tucker has proved an invaluable rebounder in key games and another rookie, Dick Farley, gained so much poise when King was out that he, too, fits smoothly into the operation. Slowly all the cripples game around. Back on Feb. 4 the Nats returned from Boston after taking a 114-88 shellacking, their third loss in four days, and Coach Cervi called President Dan Biasone to say: “We’re gone. These fellows are in a slump and we can’t shake it. On top of that we’re tired.” The next day the club invaded Rochester. A special meeting was called before the game. It was determined that the only way to shake the slump which had deprived the team of the loop lead was to get tough on defense. Cervi pleaded: “Let’s get together, play both ends of the court, and let the shots fall where they may. Don’t be looking for one man but rather for the easy shot.” Since then results have been sensational. In a month’s time the Nats have pulled far ahead of the field in the Eastern Division and now look ahead to gaining an edge in whatever playoff series might develop by willing the overall pennant. And city folks are beginning to respond. One local businessman decided to take his son to last week’s game here on a Sunday afternoon. It was his first Nats game. He went home so enthused over the entertaining hours that he phoned the office to request 1,000 tickets to be set aside in his name for the three remaining games. Reminded that the attractions might not be too good for business purposes, he responded by telling General Manager Bob Sexton- “These are not for business. I think it’s time I do my part toward supporting such a fine entertainment provided by other Syracusans.” At today’s ceremonies honoring Gabor a group of graduating football seniors will oppose a Binghamton All-Star team in the preliminaries. A special trainload on Binghamton rooters will be in attendance along with the Manlius School band for added entertainment. Billy is due to receive a new automobile after listening to speeches from his high school coach Harold “Whitey” Anderson, his college coach, Lew Andreas, and his pro mentor Al Cervi and another headline Syracuse athlete, Vic Hanson. Other gifts may be added. Since a percentage of the receipts will be donated to the Gabor fund the 50 cent ticket for children will not be in effect. However, the Nats have promised to provide each child 14 years of age or under in attendance today with a free ducat for Saturday’s game against Fort Wayne.