Independent Basketball Association

The Independent Basketball Association (IBA) was a semi-professional men's basketball league that began play in the fall of 2011. The six charter members were Battle Creek Knights, Chicago Redline, Gary Splash, Kankakee County Soldiers, Lake County Stars and Rockford Riverdawgs.[1]

Independent Basketball Association
FoundedOctober 2011
Inaugural season2011-12
CeasedJuly 2017
No. of teams8
CountryUnited States
ContinentFIBA Americas (Americas)
St. Louis Trotters (Spring 2017)
Most titlesKankakee County Soldiers (6)

The IBA played two separate seasons each calendar year: a Spring season (March–June) and a Fall season (September–January). Teams competed in one or both league competitions.

The last commissioner of the IBA was Barry Bradford, president of the Kankakee County Soldiers.


The first league championship (2011–12) was won by the Kankakee County Soldiers, who also won the 2012 Spring season championship.

In the Spring of 2012 the league expanded beyond its midwest footprint, adding a total of seven teams: Albany Legends, Kenosha Ballers, Lansing Capitals, Los Angeles Lightning, Malibu Pirates, Springfield Xpress[2] and St. Louis Trotters.

The Holland Dream were added to the IBA for its third season in 2012-13, bringing the league total to 14 teams.

IBA and PBL joined forces in 2013, but the merger was short-lived. Travel issues, questions of league rules and other issues were too much to overcome and the two parted ways[3] before the end of the Spring season.

2013-14 began with the addition of the Windy City Blazers, who played previously as the Windy City Monsters in the ABA. Grand Rapids Fusion and Markham City Racers entered league play for the 2014 Spring season.

In the Fall season of 2014-15 four teams (Binghamton Pioneers, Jersey G-Force, Kansas City Kryptonite, and Toronto 3D) played a partial schedule in anticipation of full league membership in 2015. CyFair Cobras, Houston Xperience and Louisiana Soul also were to compete as "branding teams" in the Fall season. None played an IBA game.

In December 2014 Schenectady Legends captured their first IBA championship, defeating Kenosha 154-137.[4] Albany High School graduate Lloyd "Pooh" Johnson score an IBA championship game record 61 points and was named the game MVP.[5]

Kankakee County won their league-best sixth championship in the Fall of 2015 by avenging their finals loss to St. Louis for the Spring title.


Team City Arena Founded First season in IBA
Grand Rapids Fusion Grand Rapids, Michigan City High Middle School 2014 2014
Kenosha Ballers Kenosha, Wisconsin Boys & Girls Club of Kenosha 1995 2012
Memphis Blues Memphis, Tennessee Bert Ferguson Community Center 2016 2017
Milwaukee Falcons Milwaukee, Wisconsin Milwaukee Academy of Science 2016 2016
Peoria Panthers Peoria, Illinois Peoria High School 2013 2017
St. Louis Trotters St. Louis, Missouri Mathews-Dickey Boy's & Girl's Club 1970 2011
Vehicle City Royals Flint, Michigan Hamady High School 2017
Windy City Blazers Aurora, Illinois Prisco Community Center 2011 2013

Former teams

Team City Arena Founded Last season in IBA
Battle Creek Flight Battle Creek, Michigan Kellogg Arena 2004 2011
Binghamton Pioneers ^ Binghamton, New York Binghamton High School 2014 2014
Chicago Redline Chicago, Illinois Calument Park Recreation Center 2011 2013
Gary Splash Gary, Indiana Genesis Convention Center 2010 2013
Holland Dream Holland, Michigan Holland Civic Center 2005 2012
Illinois Hoopville Warriors Belleville, Illinois Hoopville Athletic Center 2010 2016
International Racers Lemont, Illinois Lithuanian World Center 2014 2014
Jersey G-Force ^ Union City, New Jersey Union City Sports Complex 2011 2014
Kankakee County Soldiers Kankakee, Illinois KVPD RecCenter 2007 2016
Kansas City Kryptonite ^ Kansas City, Kansas travel team 2014 2014
Lake County Stars Deerfield, Illinois Trinity International University 2011 2014
Lansing Capitals Dimondale, Michigan Aim High Sports 2006 2016
Los Angeles Lightning Thousand Oaks, California Gilbert Sports Arena 2007 2012
Malibu Pirates Moorpark, California Moorpark High School 2012 2012
Rockford Riverdawgs Loves Park, Illinois Clinton Sports Complex 2010 2011
Schenectady Legends Scotia, New York Scotia-Glenville High School 2010 2014
Springfield Xpress Springfield, Illinois Lanphier High School 2012 2013
Toronto 3D ^ Toronto, Ontario The RISE Centre 2014 2014

^ = affiliate members (did not compete for championship)


Season Champion Runner-up Result
2011 Fall Kankakee County Soldiers Gary Splash 2-0 (best-of 3 series)
2012 Spring Kankakee County Soldiers Albany Legends 150-116
2012 Fall Kankakee County Soldiers Battle Creek Knights 2-1 (best-of 3 series)
2013 Spring Kankakee County Soldiers Gary Splash 116-99
2013 Fall Kankakee County Soldiers St. Louis Trotters 118-112
2014 Spring Grand Rapids Fusion Markham City Racers 104-92[6]
2014 Fall Schenectady Legends Kenosha Ballers 154-137
2015 Spring St. Louis Trotters Kankakee County Soldiers 100-85
2015 Fall Kankakee County Soldiers St. Louis Trotters 95-81
2016 Spring Kenosha Ballers St. Louis Trotters 87-83
2016 Fall Kenosha Ballers Milwaukee Falcons 117-98
2017 Spring St. Louis Trotters Windy City Blazers 123-116


Season League MVP Defensive Player of the Year Coach of the Year General Manager of the Year
2011 Fall Ryan Edwards, Kankakee County Soldiers Chris Wesby, Gary Splash Barry Bradford, Kankakee County Soldiers Melvin Smith, Rockford Riverdawgs
2012 Fall Billy Baptist, Kankakee County Soldiers Thomas Cobbs, Kenosha Ballers Terry Sare, Battle Creek Knights Barry Bradford, Kankakee County Soldiers
2013 Fall Ryan Edwards, Kankakee County Soldiers Willie Davis, St. Louis Trotters Harold Webster, St. Louis Trotters Barry Bradford, Kankakee County Soldiers
2014 Fall Lloyd Johnson, Schenectady Legends Nicholas Reed, St. Louis Trotters Scott Knapp, Schenectady Legends Mike Ceolho, Schenectady Legends
2015 Fall Jay Bradford, Kankakee County Soldiers Barry Bradford, Kankakee County Soldiers
2016 Spring Nicholas Reed, St. Louis Trotters Thomas Cobbs, Kenosha Ballers Tony Moore, Kenosha Ballers Tony Moore, Kenosha Ballers
2016 Fall Devron Bostick, Kenosha Ballers Thomas Cobbs, Kenosha Ballers Richard Moe, Milwaukee Falcons


  1. "Battle Creek Knights to join new league". USbasket. Retrieved 13 July 2011.
  2. "New basketball league brings hoops to Springfield". Illinois Times. Retrieved 12 April 2012.
  3. "The nasty breakup and the online sniping". Times Union. 3 June 2013.
  4. "Schenectady Legends Win First IBA Championship". USbasket. 14 December 2014.
  5. "Knapp goes undefeated in first season as coach". The Daily Gazette. 17 December 2014.
  6. "Grand Rapids Fusion are Spring Champions". USbasket. Retrieved 9 June 2014.
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