NBA expansion to Europe discussionsPosted by Inside Hoops
The idea of having some NBA teams in Europe has been around for a while, but whether it would work is a tough call. It could be done, though, maybe if flights were only made from Western Europe to the East coast of the United States, and then from the East teams headed West. I haven’t thought much about it, because it isn’t happening tomorrow or anytime soon. Though, the idea is reportedly being discussed again. Sports Illustrated’s Ian Thompson reports:
The NBA’s on-and-off approach to expansion into Europe is back on again. Commissioner David Stern is considering new plans to create five full-fledged NBA franchises in Europe over the next decade, a league source told SI.com. The initiative promises to be the big news of All-Star weekend in New Orleans, where international basketball officials are arriving this week for their annual meetings with the NBA. Stern is expected to reveal the league’s new stance at a news conference Saturday, according to a league source. The current idea would be to create five new teams in major markets to form a “European” division within the NBA. The teams would play the full 82-game schedule and compete for the NBA championship. But the proposal is new and many factors will influence the eventual outcome, the league source said.
I’m not sure that there’s enough fan support in major European cities to get consistent good attendance over the course of an entire season. I’m sure the league is pondering that as well.