NBL TEAMS TO PLAY SEVEN GAME SERIES IN 2018 NBA PRESEASON
The National Basketball Association (NBA) and the National Basketball League (NBL) today announced that for the second consecutive year NBL teams will travel to the U.S. to participate in the NBA preseason. Five NBL teams, including the Adelaide 36ers, Melbourne United, New Zealand Breakers, Perth Wildcats and Sydney Kings, will play a total of seven games against NBA teams in the 2018 NBA preseason, including the Denver Nuggets, LA Clippers, Philadelphia 76ers, Phoenix Suns, Toronto Raptors and Utah Jazz, from Sept. 28 – Oct. 5. This marks the most games NBA teams will play against teams from an international league in a single preseason. The first game will feature the Melbourne United against the Philadelphia 76ers on Sept. 28 at the Wells Fargo Center. The 76ers are led by Australian point guard and 2018 Rookie of the Year Ben Simmons and Brett Brown, head coach of the 76ers and former coach of the Australia men’s national team. On Sept. 29, the Perth Wildcats will play Australians Joe Ingles and Dante Exum of the Utah Jazz at the Vivint Smart Home Arena. Former NBA player Andrew Bogut and the Sydney Kings will then face the LA Clippers at the Stan Sheriff Center in Honolulu, Hawaii on Sept. 30, before the Phoenix Suns host the New Zealand Breakers at the Talking Stick Resort Arena on Oct. 3. The schedule culminates on Oct. 5 with three games: the Perth Wildcats vs. the Denver Nuggets at the Pepsi Center; Melbourne United vs. the Toronto Raptors at the Scotiabank Arena in Toronto, Canada; the Adelaide 36ers vs. the Utah Jazz at the Vivint Smart Home Arena. There were a record-tying eight Australian players on 2017-18 opening night NBA rosters, including Simmons, Ingles, Exum and Bogut. Seven Australian players and one New Zealander were on team rosters for the 2018 NBA Playoffs.