The NBA announced today that it will continue its expansion overseas with another batch of games in other countries. Over the last few seasons, we’ve seen the NBA dabble in England, Mexico, and southeast Asia. Recall that in 2012-13, the New York Knicks played the Detroit Pistons in London, which was a nice little departure from the normal grind of the NBA season.
This year, the Knicks will be returning to London to play the Milwaukee Bucks:
The Houston Rockets and Minnesota Timberwolves will play at the Mexico City Arena on Nov. 12, as part of NBA Global Games Mexico City 2014. NBA Global Games London 2015 will feature a game between the Milwaukee Bucks and New York Knicks at The O2 on Jan. 15.
The two regular-season games will follow the NBA Global Games preseason games in October that will feature five teams — the Brooklyn Nets, Cleveland Cavaliers, Miami Heat, Sacramento Kings, and San Antonio Spurs — playing a series of games in Brazil, China, Germany, and Turkey.
As part of the NBA’s effort to connect with its fans globally, NBA Global Games 2014-15 now includes a total of nine NBA teams playing seven regular-season and preseason games in seven cities in six countries.
The games overseas are a cool idea, but I’m not sure the Knicks and Bucks are quite the way to get Europeans into the NBA. The Knicks may be superstar-less if Carmelo Anthony leaves, and the Bucks were the worst team in the league for awhile before they even considered tanking.
Still, I look forward to seeing more tourist-y photos of the Knicks in Great Britain, ‘Melo reading the paper, and just a general break-up of the dullest part of the season.