Lively Tales About Dead Teams

World Team Tennis (1974-1978)


Billie Jean King was a co-founder and the face of the original World Team Tennis league (1974-1978), which launched just months after her historic exhibition win over Bobby Riggs in the “Battle of the Sexes” in 1973.  King’s husband at the time, Larry King, was a co-founder and team owner (Golden Gaters), alongside Dennis Murphy who was involved in the launch of the American Basketball Association and the World Hockey Association.

Material from this league is pretty rare these days, despite the fact that some of the biggest stars of sport (particularly the women’s game) moonlighted in WTT during the mid-1970’s:


World Team Tennis also provided the first entry into professional sports ownership for future Los Angeles Lakers and Kings owner Dr. Jerry Buss (Los Angeles Strings) and future New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft (Boston Lobsters).


World Team Tennis Franchise List

Franchise Years Active Bancroft Cup Champions
Anaheim Oranges 1978
Baltimore Banners 1974
Boston Lobsters 1974-1978
Chicago Aces 1974
Cleveland Nets 1974-1977
Denver Racquets 1974
Detroit Loves 1974
Florida Flamingos 1974
The Golden Gaters 1974-1978
Hawaii Leis 1974-1976
Houston E-Z Riders 1974
Indiana Loves 1975-1978
Los Angeles Strings 1974-1978
Minnesota Buckskins 1974
New Orleans Nets 1978
New York Apples 1977-1978
New York Sets 1974-1976
Philadelphia Freedoms 1974
Phoenix Racquets 1975-1978
Pittsburgh Triangles 1974-1976 1975
San Diego Friars 1975-1978
Seattle Cascades 1978
Sea-Port Cascades 1977
The Soviets 1977
Toronto-Buffalo Royals 1974

Written by AC

April 18th, 2012 at 3:18 pm

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2 Responses to 'World Team Tennis (1974-1978)'

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  1. George MacCall was the first commissioner of World Team Tennis.

    Kris Vollmer

    12 Jan 16 at 4:13 pm


    Southern Nevada Sports Hall of Fame, George MacCall.

    Kris Vollmer

    15 Jan 16 at 3:44 pm

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