The slate of teams for the inaugural season of the Midwest Professional Basketball League is complete, with the addition of two clubs that will play in the St. Louis area, the league announced today.
The St. Louis RiverSharks and Gateway Steam bring to six the number of clubs that will begin play in January. The RiverSharks and Steam join the Bloomington (Illinois) Flex, Champaign (Illinois) Swarm, Chicago Force, and Windy City Groove as the charter members of the league.
Both the RiverSharks and Steam will play their games at the Family Arena in St. Charles. As with the Swarm, Force and Groove, the RiverSharks and Steam will be operated under joint venture agreements with the MPBA with a group of local investors.
“It’s a great arrangement,” said Ed Schumer, MPBA commissioner. “The geography is perfect for our league, and Family Arena is a great facility. We look forward to re-energizing the pro basketball community in St. Louis,” Schumer said.
The general manager for both clubs under the joint agreement will be Tim Padgett. Padgett previously spent five years in various positions in the athletic department at Arkansas State University, including as Director of Corporate Sales, before spending two years as the Craighead County, Arkansas, Chief Deputy County Clerk. Padgett will also serve as the MPBA’s Director of Development.
The search for head coaches is already under way.
“The St. Louis area has a rich history of great basketball at all levels,” said Padgett. “I have no doubt we’ll be able to land two quality coaches in short order,” Padgett said.