National Basketball Association sets first regular-season game in Paris

NBA to play first regular season game in Paris

NBA to play first regular season game in Paris

North American basketball league the NBA has today (Thursday) confirmed it will stage its first-ever regular season game in France, with the Charlotte Hornets set to face the Milwaukee Bucks at the AccorHotels Arena in Paris on January 24, 2020.

The Bucks will take on the Charlotte Hornets at AccorHotels Arena.

"Having played in the preseason in France during my career, I witnessed first-hand the passion the French fans have for NBA basketball", Hornets owner Michael Jordan said.

The announcement looks nearly certain to end London's nine-year run as host city for the NBA's European game - the most recent of which was in January when New York Knicks lost to the Washington Wizards in front of a sell-out O2 Arena crowd.

The Bucks, meanwhile, will be making their first visit to France, having featured in the league's London game in 2015. "The opportunity to play in the first-ever regular-season game in Paris is truly an honor, and as an worldwide player, I'm grateful to the NBA for continuing to grow the game of basketball across the globe".

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Speaking in London earlier this year, the NBA's Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum told reporters: "It's been one (regular season game) per year". We are delighted to present this exceptional event alongside the National Basketball Association and welcome the prestigious competition to France. It is the result of a commitment by my staff, through all our efforts with the Paris Basketball team and all the sports clubs in Paris.

The Hornets last played a preseason game in Paris in 1994, while the Bucks will be traveling to France for the first time.

The British capital hosted NBA Regular Season contests since 2011, but the 2019-20 schedule will contain a matchup between the Charlotte Hornets and the Milwaukee Bucks.

"From the successful organisation of the 2016 football Euros to the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games, we have successfully put Paris at the forefront of the world's sporting capitals".

The NBA has been trying to play more games internationally to improve fan involvement with the league, and the move to let Charlotte play in France was the right one.

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