From Ohio History Central
Cincinnati Royals stars, Oscar Robertson and Jerry Lucas, pose with basketballs, September 18, 1963.
The Cincinnati Royals was a professional basketball team in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Cincinnati team played in the National Basketball Association from 1957 to 1972. Before moving to Cincinnati, the team originated as the Rochester Royals, and played in Rochester, New York.
The Royals struggled during their early years in Cincinnati, posting losing records during the first four years, despite the presence of NBA all-stars Maurice Stokes, Jack Tywman and Clyde Lovelette. Beginning in the early 1960s, the team experienced more success with the additions to the roster of future hall-of-famers, Oscar Robertson and Jerry Lucas. From 1961 through the 1965 season, the Royals posted winning records and finished second in their division twice. Although the Royals qualified for the NBA playoffs during those years, they were never able to win an NBA title in Cincinnati.
In 1966, the Royals fortunes began to decline and the team did not play above the .500 level for the next five seasons. In 1971, the franchise moved to Kansas City area and was known as the Kansas City-Omaha Kings, and later the Kansas City Kings. In 1985, the franchise move to Sacramento, California, where it remains as of this writing.