Josh Allen wears Buffalo Braves jersey to Bills’ season finale

Make sure to file this under ‘things you didn’t expect to see in 2019.’

Ahead of the Buffalo Bills’ Week 17 matchup with the New York Jets, quarterback Josh Allen rolled into New Era Field rocking a Buffalo Braves jersey.

One could say that he’s exiting the 2019 season in (literal) style.

If the jersey seems a bit foreign to you, don’t worry, you’re likely not alone. The Braves, Buffalo’s sole foray into the world of professional basketball, played in the NBA from 1970-1978, bolting for the sunny beaches of San Diego a full 18 years before Allen was born.

The team rebranded as the Clippers after moving to Southern California, ultimately moving 120 miles up the coast to Los Angeles in 1984.

Though the Braves only played in Buffalo for eight seasons, the team was relatively successful. They made the playoffs on three separate occasions and even employed a league MVP, with franchise player Bob McAdoo winning the prestigious award in 1975.

Despite league-average fan support and relative financial stability, the Braves left the City of Good Neighbors in 1978 after they were unable to achieve higher priority at Buffalo’s Memorial Auditorium.

The team had long been an afterthought in the basketball zeitgeist, an answer to trivia questions such as ‘Where did the Los Angeles Clippers originate?’ and ‘Which team did Hall of Fame forward Moses Malone play two games for in 1976?’

It regained some notoriety earlier this year when the Clippers introduced a vintage Braves jersey as an alternate uniform for the 2019-20 season. Los Angeles has worn the jersey a few times this season, giving Buffalo basketball fans the opportunity to see players like Kawhi Leonard and Paul George in Braves’ uniforms.

It was this jersey that Allen wore to the Bills’ 2019 season finale. In a time in which Buffalo’s other professional sports team, the NHL’s Sabres, consistently finds ways to disappoint, perhaps reminding Western New York that it once had a professional basketball team is the pick-me-up the region needed.

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