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Toledo Jim White Chevrolets

Founded:  1941
Folded:   1943
Location: Toledo, OH
Arena:    Civic Auditorium 
Built in:
Titles:   None

Owned by Sidney Goldburg the team started out as the Toledo White Huts, but after a strong showing in the 1941 World Tournament Goldburg got invited to the NBL. He paid $350 fee to join, but when the league demanded an additional $1,500 in case of forfeit Goldburg was stuck. Local businessman Jim White came to the rescue. White paid the $1,500 dollar fee and bought the team uniforms and gave them a station wagon to use. In return Goldburg named the team Jim White Chevrolets after White's car dealership. The team however kept the White Huts name for non NBL related games.

Chuck Chuckovits set a than NBL scoring record of 18.5 points a game during the 1941-42 season. The Chevrolets would lose Chuckovits the next season as he joined the US Army to fight in World War II.

The Jim White Chevrolets and the Indianapolis Kautskies were playing a day game on December 7, 1941 when the loud speaker came on an informed the audience that the Japanese had just bombed Pearl Harbor.

Toledo was one of the most unpopular places to play in the NBL because the arena was terrible and the floor was slippery which lead to a lot of injuries.

With talent limited during the War, Toledo, along with Chicago, became the first professional sports teams to sign and play black players. This happened because Sid Goldburg insisted on the league allowing him to sign black players. Due to the need for players the league quickly acquiesced to Goldburg's demands and the Chevy's began signing black players. Chicago quickly followed and it was a trend that the NBL continued until it merged with the BAA in 1949.

One of the first black players that the Chevy's signed was former University of Toledo star Bill Jones. Jones said he did not suffer any racial abuse while playing for the Chevy's and that the fans for the most part were always palatable.

The team played two lackluster seasons in the NBL before being forced to disband because of World War II.

1 Pat Hintz G 4 18 4 40 4.5 1.0 10.0
2 William Jones F 4 11 0 22 2.8 0.0 5.5
3 Robert Gerber C-F 1 9 4 22 9.0 4.0 22.0
4 Cortez Gray F-C 4 7 4 18 1.8 1.0 4.5
5 John Townsend C-F 2 6 4 16 3.0 2.0 8.0
6 Shannie BarnettF-C 4 5 4 14 1.3 1.0 3.5
7 Al Price G 3 3 2 8 1.0 0.7 2.7
8 Eddie Sadowski G 2 4 0 8 2.0 0.0 4.0
9 Casey Jones G 3 3 1 7 1.0 0.3 2.3
10 Zano Wast F 1 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 0.0

Military Veterans who have played in the NBA

The United States Military has been a big piece of American history and American lore. Before every basketball game fans stand an honor America and the men and women who have served with the playing of the Star Spangled Banner. The song immortalizes the defense of Fort McHenry from the war of 1812. The Veterans Administration (VA) estimates that 22 million Americans have served in the military. Countless famous Americans have served in the armed forces and that includes several NBA players.

During the early days of one of the NBA's precursors, the NBL, it was not uncommon for a player to leave the league to join the military. The military offered better pay and better accommodations than the league did.

World War II was nearly the end of the NBL as the majority of players left to serve. The lack of players caused the first racial integration in any major sport in American history

Complete Article

A ticket for an FDR fundraiser in 1941. The four teams that comprised the double-header were four of the biggest attraction in basketball at the time. The White Huts, which had black players, defeated the all-white Firestones 56-49 behind Chuck Chuckovitz's 28 points.

The all Jewish SPHA's defeated the all-black Rens, than the two teams drove to Detroit to play again where the Rens would be victorious.

Chuck Chuckovits

Bruins vs Jeeps program from 1941
Team photo from circa 1942-43.

Scoop Putnam

AL Alvarez