Tuesday, 6 October 2009

Stern: European teams a decade away

NBA Commissioner David Stern, speaking in London ahead of the Bulls-Jazz exhibition, has re-emphasised his desire to have a regular season game in the UK ahead of the 2012 Olympic Games.

With the first of two NBA Europe Live turns this week scheduled to sell-out, Stern admits he is keen to build on the popularity of the now annual fixture, if logistics can be worked out.

However, he has played down any suggestion that a European division of the league is any way imminent, suggesting it will be an issue for his successor to consider.

"I estimate it would take the better part of a decade before that could happen," Stern told the BBC.

"It requires so many things - we think positively, but we have to be realistic," he says, but discounts travelling distances as a potential problem.

"Broadcasters, owners, pricing models, fan affinity - these would all have to be considered. It is a tremendous undertaking."

The idea of more trans-Atlantic road trips received a mixed reaction from Bulls guard Kirk Hinrich, one of several players hit by jet-lag on the way over to the UK.

“I wouldn’t put it past the NBA to do that but it would be tough travel-wise," he said. "I don’t know how they’d work the season.

"I don’t know how it would work because the teams would be hurting pretty bad, particularly when we have a lot of stretches of four or five games on the road.”

No comments:

Post a Comment