⚾ MLB: 1870-2021 152 10
Left the National Association to become one of 8 founding clubs of the National League in 1876.
⚾ MLB: 1894-2021 128 6
One of the eight original American League teams beginning with the 1901 season.
🏈 NFL: 1919-2021 103 9
An initial franchise from the founding of the NFL in 1920, originally named the Decatur Staleys.
🏀 NBA: 1967-2021 55 6
The team was founded on January 16, 1966, and played its first game during the 1966–67 NBA season. The Bulls play their home games at the United Center, an arena on Chicago's West Side shared with the...
NHL: 1927-2021 95 6
The Blackhawks are one of the "Original Six" NHL teams along with the Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens, Toronto Maple Leafs, Boston Bruins and New York Rangers. Since 1994, the club's home rink i...

Defunct Teams

Teams that have folded or moved away from the Chicago area.
F i l t e r   &   S o r t 
WHA: 1973-1975 3
Short-lived franchise that only lasted 3 seasons in the WHA, the Cougars were the first major professional hockey team to feature player numbers on the upper right corner of their jersey.
The franchise was established in 1961 as the Chicago Packers based in Chicago, Illinois, and were renamed to Chicago Zephyrs the following season. In 1963, they relocated to Baltimore, Maryland, and b...
The American Basketball League played one full season, 1961–1962, and part of the next season until the league folded on December 31, 1962. The ABL was the first basketball league to have a three poin...
🏈 NFL: 1920-1959 40 2
The team was established in Chicago in 1898 as an amateur football team and joined the NFL as a charter member in 1920 as the Chicago Cardinals
The team's origins can be traced to the establishment of the Buffalo Bisons in 1946 in Buffalo, New York, a member of the National Basketball League (NBL) owned by Ben Kerner and Leo Ferris. After 38 ...
🏀 NBA: 1947-1950 4
In the BAA's inaugural year, the Chicago Stags were placed in the Western Division, and after 60 games were tied with the St. Louis Bombers at 38–22 each. A tiebreaker game between the two teams on Ma...
The Chicago Rockets were an American football team that played in the All-America Football Conference (AAFC) from 1946 to 1949. During the 1949 season, the team was known as the Chicago Hornets. Unlik...
From 1910 until the mid-1930s, the most dominant team in black baseball. Evolved from the split of the Chicago Union Leland Giants into the Chicago Giants and Chicago American Giants.
🏀 PBLA: 1945-1948 4 1
The Gears are notable in professional basketball history for two things. First, they were the rookie year pro team of basketball legend George Mikan. Mikan had starred at local DePaul University as a ...
Members of the short-lived and mysterious USNL developed by Branch Rickey prior to integration of blacks in baseball.
The Chicago Studebaker Flyers (also known as the Chicago Studebakers) were a National Basketball League team from 1942 to 1943. They were funded by the United Auto Workers and replaced George Halas's ...
🏀 NBL: 1926-1942 17
The Chicago Bruins were an American basketball team based in Chicago, Illinois. Owned by Chicago Bears football team owner George Halas, the Bruins were a member of the American Basketball League, a l...
Chicago Duffy Florals played for 2 seasons from 1936 to 1937, several in the MBC, before folding....
The Rock Island Independents were a professional American football team, based in Rock Island, Illinois, from 1907–1926. The Independents were a founding National Football League franchise. They hoste...
Evolved from the split of the Chicago Union Leland Giants into the Chicago Giants and Chicago American Giants. They played as a travelling team, without a home field.
⚾ FL: 1913-1915 3 1
Team disbanded after the Federal League folded following the 1915 season. The ballpark they built went on to live in infamy.
One of the nation's top teams in the Negro leagues. The 1898 tour was the club's last, as the team morphed into the new Columbia Giants in Chicago.
⚾ PL: 1890-1890 1
Team was purchased by the Chicago Colts of the National League after the Players League folded following the 1890 season.
Team moved from Chicago to Pittsburgh and became the Pittsburgh Stogies on August 23 1884, but disbanded on September 18, 1884. Many of the players joined the Baltimore Monumentals and the UA admitted the St. Paul White Caps as a new team to the league. The Union Association folded at the end of the season.
After its only year in the National Association, the franchise folded following the 1871 season.
The early history of sports contains hundreds of teams that appeared for only 1 or 2 seasons before folding. Most of these teams have no historical photographs or articles, so are omitted from this list to reduce clutter. To view a comprehensive list of all defunct teams, browse to the early leagues section for baseball, football, basketball, or hockey.