3 reasons why NBA is conducting preseason games in Abu Dhabi ahead of 2022-23 season

The NBA will host two preseason games in Abu Dhabi this year. The Milwaukee Bucks and Atlanta Hawks traveled to the Middle East and will be looking to put on a show for the Emiratis.

This is the first time that the prestigious basketball league will host games in the United Arab Emirates. Increasing the league’s popularity is one of Adam Silver’s main goals, which is one of the reasons why the NBA is hosting games in the Arabian Gulf.

Let’s look at three reasons why the league is conducting preseason games in Abu Dhabi:

Increasing the brand’s popularity

Preseason games in Abu Dhabi will make the NBA much more popular (Image via Getty Images)
Preseason games in Abu Dhabi will make the NBA much more popular (Image via Getty Images)

The two preseason games in Abu Dhabi will positively impact the NBA’s popularity in the United Arab Emirates. Basketball isn’t popular in the country and most prefer soccer.

However, bringing the NBA to the UAE is the right move from a financial perspective. The country’s GDP is one of the highest in the world, meaning that the league could potentially find new investors in the region.

The late David Stern wanted to make the league a global brand and he did a lot in this regard. Now, it’s time for Adam Silver to pick up what the previous commissioner left and expand the NBA beyond borders.


Traveling outside the country

Playing games in Abu Dhabi will benefit players as well (Image via Getty Images)
Playing games in Abu Dhabi will benefit players as well (Image via Getty Images)

The entire world was hit by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. The NBA wasn’t immune to the horrible situation and was forced to shut down mid-season.

The season eventually resumed, but teams had to stay in an isolated area better known as the NBA Bubble. With no contact with the outside world, players had to follow strict regulations.

For the first time since 2019, the NBA will host global games. The two preseason games will be a good opportunity for the Milwaukee Bucks and Atlanta Hawks to popularize the sport outside the United States.


Games in Abu Dhabi celebrate international players and diversity

NBA's global games promote diversity (Image via Getty Images)
NBA’s global games promote diversity (Image via Getty Images)

On Oct. 6, Giannis Antetokounmpo will step on the floor of the Etihad Arena on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi. The Bucks forward will show fans why he’s one of the best basketball players in the world.

Giannis is one of the many international players who have achieved a lot of success in the NBA. Besides Antetokounmpo, Luka Doncic and Nikola Jokic were also born and raised outside of the United States.

The NBA’s plan to go global is great for celebrating diversity and all the international players who play in the league.

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Edited by Gautam Aggarwal



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