The American Basketball League was anchored by stable franchises in Brooklyn, Jersey (Union City), New York, and Philadelphia, but continued to be vexed with the problem of filling the necessary fifth and sixth slots. The Kingston team that had won the New York State League title the previous season replaced the weak Boston franchise. Benny Borgmann purchased the New Britain franchise and transferred it to his hometown, Paterson, New Jersey.
Exciting new young players were moving to the forefront of the league. Most of the pre-Depression stars were gone, beaten out of their jobs by quicker, younger players. The best of the newcomers was Brooklyn’s 21-year-old Bobby McDermott, a chiseled six-footer, whose cocky, swaggering style of play never failed to illicit a chorus of cheers or jeers. In addition to a deadly set shot (he led the league in scoring), McDermott handled the ball well and played aggressive defense. His teammate Pete Berensen, a second-year pro from CCNY, was also among the league’s elite. Jersey showcased youngsters Moe Spahn and Moe Frankel, while Paterson had a fine shooter in LIU rookie Phil Rabin.
Philadelphia easily took first-half honors, but slumped in the second half to throw the race wide open. Brooklyn took advantage of Jersey’s continuing problems at center to nip the Reds by one game at the wire for the honors of facing the Sphas in the playoffs. With the home team winning each game, they split the first six games. In the deciding seventh game at Philadelphia, the Sphas beat the speedy Visitation at their own game. Philadelphia moved the ball constantly to wear down the speed of the faster Visitation five. The key to the Sphas’ attack was their youthful center Moe Goldman, who completely outplayed Brooklyn veterans Howie Bollerman and Bob Grody. By the third period the Visitation’s offense had broken down completely and Philadelphia won by a lopsided 47-34 score to take their second ABL title.