MEXICO Town – The National Basketball Association intends to place an N.B.A. G League franchise within the Mexican capital, relating to three people familiar with the league’s plans.
A team in the G Group, N.B.A.’s official small league, which would be owned and operated locally, could commence play as soon as next season, according to the people, who requested anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the subject publicly.
Establishing a G Group franchise on Mexican soil will be the newest serious step by the N.B.A. to get a foothold in Mexico and measure the viability of putting an N.B.A. team in the largest marketplace in Latin America.
While stressing that his league is not actively pursuing expansion or relocation for just about any of its 30 current franchises, Commissioner Adam Silver has described Mexico City as an all natural contender for an eventual N.B.A. team on numerous situations this year.
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The Brooklyn Nets are playing two “home” video games at the Mexico Metropolis Arena this week: Thursday night against Oklahoma Metropolis and Saturday night against Miami. Those games are the centerpiece of the N.B.A.’s 25th anniversary special event of its first exhibition game in Mexico in 1992 and the 20th anniversary of its primary regular-season game here (Dec. 6, 1997).
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The N.B.A. G Group is scheduled to have franchises owned or straight associated with 27 N.B.A. clubs next season since it continues to work toward its long-stated “30 for 30” aim, which calls for every N.B.A. franchise to get a direct affiliate in the developmental league.
The Mexico Metropolis franchise is likely to begin operations before the G Group gets to 30 N.B.A.-owned franchises, but, according to the people, it will be owned and operated different from the N.B.A.