While the Chaparrals had been modestly successful on the court, they were sinking financially by their third season, largely because the ownership group refused to spend much money on the team cheap nba snapbacks australia. After missing the playoffs for the first time in their existence in the 1972–73 season, nearly all of the owners wanted out. A group of 36 San Antonio businessmen, led by Manager/Angelo Drossos, Chairman of the Board/John Schaefer and President/Red McCombs, worked out a “lend-lease” deal with the Dallas ownership group. Drossos and his group would lease the team for three years and move it to San Antonio, and agreed to return the team to Dallas if no purchase occurred by 1975.
After the deal was signed, the team was renamed the San Antonio Gunslingers cheap plain snapbacks australia. However, before they even played a game the name was changed to Spurs. The team’s primary colors were changed from the red, white, and blue of the Chaparrals to the now familiar black, silver and white motif of the Spurs. In the first game at the HemisFair Arena the Spurs lost to the San Diego Conquistadors, despite attracting a noisy crowd of 6,000 fans. A smothering defense was the team’s image, as they held opponents less than 100 points an ABA record 49 times. The early Spurs were led by ABA veteran James Silas, and the team would get stronger as the season went on as they twice took advantage of the Virginia Squires, acquiring Swen Nater, who would go on to win Rookie of the Year, in November, and “The Iceman” George Gervin in January. The ABA tried to halt the Gervin deal, claiming it was detrimental to the league, but a judge would rule in the Spurs’ favor, and Gervin made his Spurs debut on February 7. The Spurs would go on to finish with a 45–39 record, good for 3rd place in the Western Division.
In the playoffs, the Spurs would battle the Indiana Pacers to the bitter end before falling in seven games. San Antonio embraced the Spurs cheap wholesale snapbacks with open arms; the Spurs drew 6,303 fans per game, surpassing the Chaparrals’ entire total attendance in only 18 games. Schaefer, Drossos and McCombs knew a runaway hit when they saw it. After only one year, they exercised their option to tear up the lease agreement, buy the franchise outright and keep the team in San Antonio for good