28 Teams In 28 Days: Meet The Erie BayHawks

By Jake Winderman | August 27, 2018

Team: Erie BayHawks

First Season: 2019-20 (Inaugural Season as current franchise)

Affiliate: New Orleans Pelicans

Location: Erie, Pennsylvania

Arena: Erie Insurance Arena

Head Coach: Ryan Pannone

Mascot: Clutch The BayHawk

Current Two-Way Players: Zylan Cheatham (Arizona State) and Josh Gray (LSU)

Notable Alumni: Jeremy Lin, Seth Curry, Garrett Temple, Danny Green, Cliff Alexander, Ed Davis, Ricky Davis, C.J. Leslie, Josh Magette, Chris McCullough, C.J. Wilcox, Terrence Jones

The current Erie BayHawks are an expansion franchise after the previous Erie BayHawks were moved from Erie to College Park after the 2018-19 season. The current BayHawks are affiliated with the New Orleans Pelicans and had their expansion draft on August 28, selecting Derrick Jones Jr., Trey Burke, Kyle Wiltjer and 11 other players. You can read more about the 2019 NBA G League Expansion Draft here.

The BayHawks’ namesake has been around since 2008 but was originally part of another franchise. In 2016, the Orlando Magic purchased the original BayHawks franchise with the intention of moving the team to Lakeland, where they would eventually become the Lakeland Magic. In order to preserve the history of the franchise, Atlanta Hawks ownership and the BayHawks’ original management team including Owen McCormick and Matt Bresee partnered to keep the BayHawks in Erie for two seasons before the move to Georgia.

In their first season under Atlanta Hawks ownership, the BayHawks won the Southeast Division and made it all the way to the Eastern Conference Finals. The team ranked 2nd in the NBA G League in blocks per game (6.4 BPG), 5th in defensive rating per game (103 DRtgPG), 5th in assists per game (24.2 APG) and 7th in steals per game (9.7 SPG). Josh Magette, the BayHawks’ floor general, led all qualified players in dimes per contest with 10.2 assists per game. He was the only player in the league to average double-digit assists last season.

The franchise’s name came about from two natural mainstays in the Erie area. Local landmark Presque Isle Bay is located off the coast of Erie, Pennsylvania within the parameters of Lake Erie. The team’s BayHawks nickname comes from the hawks that inhabit and find their home in Presque Isle State Park, located on Presque Isle Bay.

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