London can expect more NBA games despite ceding its role as the host of the league’s annual European detour to Paris.

The French capital will take the basketball spotlight when the Milwaukee Bucks meet the Charlotte Hornets on Friday, a geographical shift following nine years of regular season contests at The 02 Arena.

A fresh market, additional options, the NBA’s European supremo Ralph Rivera acknowledged while confirming that Paris will retain the showpiece in 2021. However the UK, which brought a sell-out every January, will remain a key market with the possibility of a double-header on each side of the Channel.

“We’ve had tremendous response to the Games in London at The 02,” he said. “I’ve said it wasn’t about leaving London. It was about the opportunity to come to Paris. Where it really comes down to is the logistics of it in terms of the travel, the rest and the logistics of moving between two cities and doing that within a specific window,

“But it is something that we look at. And if we’re able to get a bit more flex in the schedule based on the overall schedule, then that becomes much more feasible. So, the constraint is more about logistics and scheduling, then it is about desirability of market or facilities.”


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