U.S. professional basketball league. It was formed in 1949 by the merger of two rival organizations, the National Basketball League (founded 1937) and the Basketball Association of America (1946). In 1976 the NBA was augmented by the absorption of four teams from the former American Basketball Association (founded 1967). The NBA membership is divided into two conferences, each with three divisions. The Eastern Conference consists of the Atlantic Division (Boston Celtics, New Jersey Nets, New York Knicks, Philadelphia 76ers, Toronto Raptors), the Central Division (Chicago Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers, Detroit Pistons, Indiana Pacers, Milwaukee Bucks), and the Southeast Division (Atlanta Hawks, Charlotte Bobcats, Miami Heat, Orlando Magic, Washington Wizards). The Western Conference consists of the Northwest Division (Denver Nuggets, Minnesota Timberwolves, Portland Trail Blazers, Seattle SuperSonics, Utah Jazz), the Pacific Division (Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, Phoenix Suns, Sacramento Kings), and the Southwest Division (Dallas Mavericks, Houston Rockets, Memphis Grizzlies, New Orleans Hornets, San Antonio Spurs).