One of the forgotten casualties of the 2011 player lockout was the NBA Europe Live Tour bringing top teams from North America to Euroleague arenas – and sometimes vice versa. The NBA Europe Live Tour 2011 was cancelled due to the labor issues, but happily EL officials announced at about noon CET today that the tour is back on for 2012.
Official press release follows, but BallinEurope’ll tell you straight up front that the games on the NBA Europe Live 2012 tour include: Boston Celtics vs. Fenerbahce Ulker on October 5; the Dallas Mavericks vs. Alba Berlin on Oct. 6; Celtics at Emporio Armani Milano on Oct. 7; and, presumably the Mavs against that unnamed Liga Endesa team soon thereafter.
(Euroleague) – The Boston Celtics and the Dallas Mavericks of the National Basketball Association (NBA), and top Euroleague Basketball teams Alba Berlin from Germany, EA7 Emporio Armani from Italy, and Fenerbahce Ulker Istanbul from Turkey will play a series of preseason games this October as part of NBA Europe Live 2012 presented by BBVA, the NBA and Euroleague Basketball.
The four-game tour tips off on Oct. 5 when the 17-time NBA Champion Boston Celtics play five-time Turkish Champions Fenerbahce Ulker Istanbul at the newly opened, state-of-the-art Ulker Sports Arena in Istanbul, Turkey. The highly successful O2 World in Berlin, Germany, will be the venue for the homecoming of German national Dirk Nowitzki as the 2011 NBA Champion Dallas Mavericks take on eight-time German Champions Alba Berlin on Oct. 6. Next stop is Milan, Italy, where 25-time Italian Champions EA7 Emporio Armani will match up against the Celtics at the Mediolanum Forum on Oct.7. The Mavericks will play an additional game in Spain with details to be announced in the near future.
“Returning to Europe with two storied NBA franchises for the sixth installment of the NBA Europe Live presented by BBVA is a testament to our commitment to bringing more live games and events to our fans in Europe,” said Benjamin Morel, Senior Vice President, NBA Europe. “As part of our longstanding collaboration with Euroleague Basketball and with the support of BBVA and all of our partners, fans can look forward to an exciting blend of basketball action, interactive fan events and community-based initiatives as the sport of basketball thrives across the continent.”
“Since 2006 both of the leading basketball competitions, Euroleague Basketball and the NBA, have been coming together to offer fans spectacular basketball and this year is no exception,” said Roser Queralto, Euroleague Basketball’s Chief Business Development Officer. “Some of the best and historic teams from the NBA will face off with some of the strongest Euroleague and European teams for some exciting preseason games to warm up for the next season.”
As part of a multiyear partnership, BBVA – the official bank of the NBA – will serve as the presenting partner of NBA Europe Live for the first time, with Turkish Bank Garanti, which is part owned by BBVA, to be the presenting partner of the game in Istanbul. Adidas will return as a Pan-European partner, a position it has held for all six editions of the tour.
Following the NBA Europe Live Tour 2012, over 450,000 fans will have attended 32 Europe Live games in 12 cities since the inaugural NBA Europe Live series that took place in 2006. In total, 60 games featuring 25 NBA teams will have been played in 18 cities in Europe since 1988.
Extensive community events and programs will again compliment the on-court action in each of the four cities. As part of its NBA Cares initiative, the NBA family has helped create and build 23 places in Europe where children and families can live, learn or play in nine European countries. NBA Europe Live 2012 will also consist of a range of activities for fans in addition to the games, including interactive fan events, basketball development programs, player appearances and more.