In the summer of 1935, the Midwest Basketball Conference was formed with Firestone Tire Company, supplying the impetus. Dr. H.C. Carlson, basketball coach at the University of Pittsburgh was named commissioner. The league was organized informally, with individual teams arranging their own schedules. While it nominally operated as an amateur organization, it was in fact a professional league.
After two seasons as an “amateur” league, the Midwest Basketball Conference ended the transparent charade and formally restructured as a professional circuit, the National Basketball League. Pro basketball now had two recognized major leagues, but the contrasts in style of play, player personnel, and ownership between the two leagues far outweighed the similarities.