I just got back from Berlin where the o2 World hosted the Washington Wizards and the New Orleans Hornets. Germany has always been a country where the NBA is much more known than the Euroleague – maybe one reason why the NBA chose Germany – besides their deal with AEG, which built the arena in Berlin.
Now, this blog is called BallinEUROPE, which might make you think we LOVE the Euroleague and aren’t big fans of the NBA. You just cannot compare the two at all. The one league represents pure passion and love for the team, the other represents show and entertainment. Of course, both are great things to have and follow.
What did the fans think about the game?
Everybody in Germany was excited to get to see Chris Paul, and he got a standing ovation when announced. Fans ran around in Wizards and Hornets jerseys although this was “only” a preseason showoff game. Things where going well until the Hornets were up 47-9.
I really wasn’t expecting much from this game, but I did not expect to see a blowout which you can follow for free in any 6th division league in Germany – for free. The Wizards shot a horrible percentage from the floor and even the quieter German fans started to whistle and boooo!
What does David Stern think of Europe?
David Stern gave his interview before the game and basically named the same facts that he named in London and Paris before. Thanks to some great journalists he even had to answer the same questions again. Come on, guys, a little bit more preparation please!
It was interesting to hear, though, what David Stern had to say about regular NBA season games in Europe and especially about Brandon Jennings.
Nine years ago, David Stern promised regular NBA season games in Europe with a deadline of 10 years. With only one year to go, it looks pretty certain that there won’t be any games going on next season. David Stern’s reason: “Europe is not ready. We have done everything but we do not have the arenas that we need.” This is what Mr. Stern finds out after nine years? If you really want to expand, don’t you think you should try to see if the venues that you want to play in are ready? To me, it just sounds just like a bad excuse to fully pursue David’s new goal, i.e. TAKE OVER CHINA!, I am sure we will see NBA franchises in China earlier than in Europe.
What Stern did promise: NBA regular-season games before the 2012 Olympics in London. Let’s hope we have enough arenas by then!
David Stern’s take on Brandon Jennings
Basically, the commissioner thinks that it only helps NBA teams to see Jennings play at a higher level – So does this mean the NCAA and the D-league suck? He also mentioned that it’s good for Brandon’s bank account as well as for Virtus Roma. The NBA commissioner is also not concerned that this will be a new trend, since so many European players come to the US to go to college while only one guy did it the other way. The only difference: The European guys actually go to college to improve and not just to avoid the out-of-high-school-for-one-year rule.
BallinEurope’s take on NBA Europe in Berlin
Just as Jordi Bertomeu, Euroleague’s CEO who enjoyed at least one half from the brand new VIP box, we weren’t “absolutely thrilled” as the German web site sportal.de reported today. How can you be thrilled when an NBA team gets killed and the main stars are on the floor for 10 minutes? One thing we’re really looking forward to: the Euroleague Final Four in Berlin in May. Get ready, Germany!