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The NBA has for a long time worked on its efforts to be more global, and now commissioner Adam Silver is looking at another international market to try and play some of the leagues games.
That market is Latin America, and Thursday Silver said, via ESPN, that he’d like to see more games played there.
The commissioner of the NBA spoke before Orlando and Chicago went at it at the the 22,300-seat Arena Ciudad de Mexico, Silver said it felt like business as usual, and that the area was right up to the normal NBA standards.
“As you can see, this is a state-of-the-art arena,” Silver said. “These will be our 27th and 28th games in Mexico.”
It was that area that prompted the NBA to return to Mexico for the first time since 1997, and Silver said there are plans for even more games in the market.
“We’re committed to come back to Mexico for many years to come,” he said. He also went on to state that chats between the NBA and Mexico have been “very positive.”
“There were long lines of fans just waiting to get in [to the Bulls-Magic game],” Silver said.
Chicago is one of the most popular teams in Mexico, despite their record and the fact that a guy nicknamed ‘Air Jordan’ hasn’t been on their roster in two decades.
The Lakers, according to a July 2018 study commissioned by the league, is the most popular NBA franchise in Mexico, and adding LeBron James this summer didn’t hurt that study whatsoever.
As far as the long term plan for Latin America and Mexico? Silver said he wants a team “planting its flag in Mexico” sooner rather than later.