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The W - Basketball - NBA to expand to Europe?
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thecubsfan
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Since: 10.12.01
From: Aurora, IL

Since last post: 1 hour
Last activity: 37 min.
#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 10.00
I think this was actually the biggest sports news of yesterday - the Clemens stuff, the Kidd trade/no-trade, even the UofIndiana violations ultimately only affect teams or individuals. If this is what is sounds like, it'll affect leagues.

SI.com


    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.


The five sites suggested
- London
- Berlin
- Rome
- Madrid (assuming that's where Real is building it's arena)
- ?

It was inevitable a North American league is going to do this at some point - there's only so may cities to go around that can support teams, and expansion fees are big money to existing teams. I would've guessed it'd be a more completely separate league - like NFL Europe - so teams wouldn't be taking inseason cross Atlantic road trips.

75 new jobs probably sounds great to the players association, but are they going to be willing to live (or be traded) to a team on another continent, possibly speaking another language? Will European fans embrace teams which may be all Americans (or will the NBA insist on local stars on rosters?) And how do you fairly schedule a 35 team league with playoffs?



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Zeruel
Thirty Millionth Hit
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Since: 2.1.02
From: The Silver Spring in the Land of Mary.

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#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.05
One problem I see is that you could have players that would have troubles getting visas and being able to travel with the team if they've had legal troubles.

MLB and the National Hockey League of Canada and America have Canadian teams and I haven't heard of such troubles, yet.

Could you imangine a 20 year old kid getting drafted by an European team and having to move thousands of miles from home? To a land where they may or may not know the language.

Would LeBron have skipped college if he was in danger of being taken by Berlin in the 1st round?



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StaggerLee
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Since: 3.10.02
From: Right side of the tracks

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#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.97
    Originally posted by Zeruel
    >Would LeBron have skipped college if he was in danger of being taken by Berlin in the 1st round?


50 or 60 million buys a nice translator and pays the phone bill.


This would do wonders for the Europeans who would like to play in the NBA, but don't have enough exposure, as I am sure scouting would be turned up a notch or two.

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