6:17 PM ET
The NBA is still looking at scenarios that could allow teams to play in Europe and China again next season, deputy commissioner Mark Tatum said Tuesday.
Tatum also said the NBA’s season-opening doubleheader Tuesday night would be shown in China on Tencent, a league streaming partner. But the coronavirus pandemic is preventing the league from playing any games outside the U.S. this season, except possibly a return by the Toronto Raptors to Canada — something that won’t happen before March at the earliest.
Typically, the NBA has played preseason games in China and takes some regular-season games to Mexico and Europe. This season’s plans called for a game in Paris, though the pandemic forced those to be tabled.
“We do anticipate that once it becomes healthy and safe to be able to do that that we’ll return to a schedule of international preseason and regular-season games,” Tatum said on a call with international reporters.
NBA games were available on Tencent last season even while the league and the Chinese government worked through a very strained relationship — an October 2019 tweet by then-Houston general manager Daryl Morey showing support