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The Denver Nuggets are a professional basketball team based in Denver, Colorado. The Nuggets are a member of the Northwest Division of the Western Conference in the National Basketball Association (NBA). The team was founded as the Denver Larks in 1967 as a charter franchise of the American Basketball Association (ABA) but changed its name to Rockets before the first season. It changed its name again to the Nuggets in anticipation of an ABA–NBA merger in 1974, and played for the final ABA Championship title in 1976, losing to the New York Nets.
The team joined the NBA in 1976 after the ABA-NBA merger and has had some periods of success, making the playoffs for nine consecutive seasons in the 1980s and doing the same for the previous ten seasons. However, it has not made an appearance in a championship round since its last year in the ABA. The Nuggets play their home games at Pepsi Center which they share with the Colorado Avalanche of the National Hockey League (NHL). In 1967, one of the ABA's charter franchises was awarded to a group in Kansas City, Missouri, headed by Southern California businessman James Trindle. However, Trindle was unable to find a suitable arena in the Kansas City area. League commissioner George Mikan suggested moving the team to Denver. After agreeing to name Denver native and former NBA player Vince Boryla as general manager, Trindle moved his team to Denver as the Denver Bunting, named after the Colorado state bird. The Trindle group was severely undercapitalized, leading Mikan to order the Larks to post a $100,000 performance bond or lose the franchise. Hours before the deadline, Trindle sold a two-thirds controlling interest to Denver trucking magnate Bill Ringsby for $350,000. Ringsby then renamed the team the Rockets, after his company's long-haul trucks.