Clippers To Play Exhibition Games In China
March 23, 2015
The National Basketball Association announces that NBA Global Games China 2015 will feature two preseason games between the Charlotte Hornets and the Los Angeles Clippers in October.
The Clippers and Hornets will play the NBA’s first game ever in Shenzhen when they meet on Oct. 11 at the Shenzhen Universiade Center, followed by a rematch in Shanghai on Oct. 14 at the Mercedes-Benz Arena.
The NBA in 2004 became the first American professional sports league to compete in China, with two exhibition games between the Houston Rockets and the Sacramento Kings in Shanghai and Beijing. Following NBA Global Games China 2015, the NBA will have played 20 games in Greater China since 2004. The NBA is the most popular sports league in China, and basketball is the nation’s number one team sport, with 300 million people playing the game.
“Returning to China to participate in the NBA Global Games China is another important step in establishing the Clippers as a first-class international franchise,” said Clippers owner Steve Ballmer.
“I have been to the largest cities and the smallest villages in China, and the one constant is their love and knowledge of basketball and the NBA,” said former NBA star Dikembe Mutombo. “Walking down the street I am humbled that the fans know and recognize me, even though I have retired from the game, and that to me speaks volumes about the NBA’s popularity in China.”