The Kentucky Basketball Developmental League, (abbreviated to the KBDL), is a professional basketball minor league based out of the city of Newport, Kentucky, United States. Its stated goal is to be a minor league to develop American basketball players for professional basketball outside the United States. The KBDL used FIBA rules and the Olympic basketball.
The KBDL began play in June 2005 with four teams:
- American Bulldogs (Hopkinsville, Kentucky)
- Louisville Lightning (Louisville, Kentucky)
- Mountain Blazers (Hazard, Kentucky)
- River City Gamblers (Shively, Kentucky)
In July, 2006, the Kentucky Basketball Developmental League and expanded with more teams:
- Central Kentucky Express (Irvine, Kentucky), head coach: Larry Tiller (Played Pro in France)
- Mountain Shooting Stars ( Blazers changed names in 2008)
- Lebanon Lancers (Lebanon, Kentucky), head coach: Kevin Ellery (Kentucky Mr. Basketball)
- RiverCity Gamblers (Louisville, Kentucky), head coach: Maurice "Mo" Smith
- Southern Indiana Generals (Elizabeth, Indiana), head coach: Scott Schoen
- Harrodsburg Tankers (Harrodsburg, KY) folded during the first year...see below
- Thoroughbreds (Lexington, Kentucky), head coach: Steve Miller
The 2009 season saw teams in Cincinnati, Ohio - Huntington, West Virginia - Indianapolis, Indiana and Nashville, Tennessee as KBDL expanded and reaches out for new talents and teams. One team turned out to be a large failure. The Harrodsburg Tankers. Many, Many problems with the team. The final one, for example, an incident occurred during a game in Milford, Ohio in May of 2009. The league director, stripped the team of its management, coash, uniforms and schedule, basically killing the team. The same team's head coach was pulled from the bench in the middle of the game and slandered by both the team owner and the league director during the a final public argument between the two in which the coach was finally, forcibly removed from the property and the Harrodsburg Tankers were dissolved. Legal action followed (see below). The league's last completed season had these teams in it:
- Cincinnati Stallions
- Northern Kentucky Thunder
- Rivercity Gamblers
- Southern Indiana Generals
- Thoroughbreds (travel team)
We have sent over 60 players to play Pro ball overseas and even a head coach in Iceland came from KBDL.
If you will check other leagues, you will find that many are using the methods that we created, some so close that it looks like OUR website. Many have even adopted the basketball that we use.
We have been involved in one legal action.
After being fired, the Tankers Coach went on an internet rant. I COULD simply erase what the fool above wrote, but this is more interesting. The team in question was the Harrodsburg Tankers, not the Tri-State Tankers (never heard of them. The writer probably used that name so he could not be identified on an anonymous site such as this). There was a player on the Tankers that had started two fights in previous games. The GM, who was a "minister" (I put that word in quotes for reasons that you will see if you read on) was told in no uncertain terms that the player was NOT to be associated with the KBDL in any form from that night forward. In spite of direct instruction, he showed up in Cincinnati, dressed and playing. I spoke with the GM during warmups that he was NOT to play…he played. During half time I took the GM into the office and we talked strongly and loudly about this problem. In the end I said "He is OFF the team." The response was "Its MY team and I will play who I want." I responded "You're fired." He said that the team would walk, I offered to hold the door for them...and it went downhill from there. After the game, in the parking lot, I did indeed ask for the uniforms, etc and they were indeed threw at me. Now the interesting part.
In subsequent emails with the "minister" GM, I asked for the T-Shirts and merchandise that KBDL paid for, to allow the Tankers to sell. The response was basically "WHAT T-SHIRTS ? I don't have any T-Shirts." Then all contact was broken. I collected all of the information, photos, receipts etc, built a "case" sent it to the leaders of the Church outfit that this "Minister" was a part of. Suddenly he was back in contact asking me to not put his "ministerial" career in jeopardy but still denying the merchandise existed. Our Attorney prepared a court case. Part or our case were photos of the GMs own MOTHER at the merchandising table selling Tanker merchandise. We pushed the fact that if we went to court, his Mother would definitely be our Star witness to testify against him. At this point, the offer was made to return the merchandise. Also at this point, since we had been informed by him on several occasions that there WAS NO MERCHANDISE, we simply demanded the money for the merchandise or we would go to court. The merchandise that "didn't exist" was paid for through our attorney avoiding court.
I still have all of the photos, emails, and evidence and our attorney still has the files if anyone would like to check this out. I also still have the same attorney, who also checked out this response before I placed it (Admittedly he said I should just let it go, but also said that I was on strong legal grounds if I published it. If the writer believes this is false, sue me…maybe we can call his Mother as a witness. I would suggest that the writer stick to being a "minister" and not attempt basketball...
I will copy this and send it to the Ministerial Board again to show that this is still going on, despite their warnings.
Looking forward to 2019. See you there.