Oct 4, 2012, 10:50 AM EDT
How about this for a road trip?
The New York Knicks and Detroit Pistons are traveling to London for a regular season game Jan. 17, the league confirmed Thursday. The game will be a homecoming to the O2 Arena for the Knicks Carmelo Anthony and Tyson Chandler, who won gold there with Team USA this summer in the London Olympics (most of the games were played in “the marshmallow” but the big games moved to the big arena).
This is all part of the international branding of the NBA as the premiere basketball league in the world. So are the Olympics, even if Mark Cuban is pissed he doesn’t directly get a cut of that.
“London was the epicenter of global sports this summer, and the Olympics were a tremendous showcase for basketball,” said NBA Commissioner David Stern. “Playing our third regular-season game in the city in three years and having historic franchises like the Knicks and Pistons serve as our ambassadors provide extraordinary opportunities to further the game’s growth and development in the UK and throughout Europe.”
This is not the first time the NBA has gone to London for a regular season game, the Raptors and then New Jersey Nets played a pair there in 2011. This should at least be a better game.
No details yet on where and when the game is televised. Both teams have a few days off on either side of this to keep the jet lag to a minimum.