Could Real Madrid really join the NBA?

Views: 212
This will be some description under the media in header

American sports are often ridiculed for the “world champions” banners that hang from the rafters. How can you be world champions when you only play in one country? Hell, we even call our baseball championship the World Series. But if one Spanish club has its way, the title could hold far more weight in the future; at least in the NBA.

Last week in an interview on La Cadena SER (Spain’s premier radio station) Real Madrid president Florentino Perez was somewhat bullish about the chances that the team – founded in 1931 as a division of the football club – could one day join the biggest basketball league in the world.

In October, Real Madrid are set to play against the Boston Celtics, and it’s then that Perez reportedly plans to make his proposal to NBA commissioner Adam Silver. In what seems to be careening towards a Godfather-esque scenario, Perez, who’s been known for his ruthless maneuvering in the European soccer market, likely thinks he can make an offer that Silver can’t refuse.

Despite the mere formality of the meeting, and the improbability of Real Madrid really joining the NBA, it’s an intriguing prospect; one that gives credence to the prospect of the NBA as a truly global league, a position that it’s been inching towards for decades now.

The NBA’s fascination with global basketball is no secret. Former commissioner David Stern was outspoken in his desire to see an NBA as global entity, and under his tenure – through increased outreach and the plethora of international players who’ve made their mark in the league — the international draw of the NBA has grown leaps and bounds. Ahead of the 2005 finals, a matchup between the Detroit Pistons and the San Antonio Spurs that featured seven international players, Stern was buoyant.

“Our push on globality continues,” Stern said, “and in some ways the Spurs are sort of a United Nations team, which has demonstrated the impact of globality.”

Of course, much of the NBA’s international growth in the past two decades can be tethered directly impact of the 1992 Olympic Dream team. That year, as Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird and co ventured into the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, they were elevated to godly status, cheered on at every juncture by adoring fans. Their coach, the late Chuck Daly, even referred to them as the Beatles for the hysteria they created everywhere they went. Always forward thinking; Daly could already see the long-term effects in action.

“Finally there will come a day – I’m not saying it will happen any time soon, mind you, but it’s inevitable that it will happen – that they will be able to compete with us on even terms. And they’ll look back on the Dream Team as a landmark event in that process,” he said.

China and India have potential for growth, but logistics mean it’s difficult to see the NBA establishing any roots there, leaving Europe as the potential goldmine. Some of the continent’s countries are already basketball fanatics, and the addition of a legitimate, NBA-caliber team could be all that’s needed to take the sport to new heights.

But Perez’s machinations aside, that team is unlikely to be Real Madrid.

The ACB (Asociación de Clubs de Baloncesto) and the Euroleague are not going to be happy with the prospect of their biggest draw leaving the Spanish League to be a bottom feeder in the NBA. It severely damages their talent pool and fanbase. The European owners could lose money while the NBA gains an entirely new demographic.

If the NBA ever does expand to Europe it will likely be in the form of expansion teams created in major European cities: think “the Madrid Royals” or something of the sort. It would also have to happen all at once, because there is no logical way the NBA would create a singular European franchise. Instead the expansion will more likely resemble four teams in four major cities – Paris, London, Berlin and Madrid.

But how does this work? Do these teams just join the existing conferences or is there an “NBA Europe” division? Of course, flight times would be another major obstacle but not necessarily a death knell. Currently a flight from Los Angeles to Madrid is about 11 hours, but this could be circumvented easily – American teams could go to Europe once or twice all year and play all the Euro teams over a 10-day stretch, for example.And these long road trips aren’t necessarily far-fetched. The San Antonio Spurs already have their annual “Rodeo Road Trip” that’s actually become a major part of their season. Since 2003, the annual rodeo at the Spurs’ AT&T Arena leaves the team with no option but to undertake a lengthy road trip which also includes the All-Star break. Coach Gregg Popovich usually uses the time on the road to fine-tune his team and get them mentally prepared for the post-season.

While the prospect is enticing, however, the drawbacks are plentiful. The Toronto Raptors have often found it difficult to lure any major free agents, especially Americans, to their team, their biggest coup in their history so far being Hedo Turkoglu.

Now take the unfamiliarity with a place like Toronto, add in a different language, cultural barriers and place it thousands of miles away. A minor annoyance now becomes a massive issue. Madrid may certainly seem like a more intriguing place to live than Milwaukee, but how many 19-year-old kids really want to uproot everything and jet off to Spain; far away from their family, friends and everything they know? The culture shock could be a massive deterrent. There’s also a flipside to this, as many of the NBA’s top European talents may prefer to make an NBA-level salary while living in their home country.

Perhaps in this scenario the Gasol brothers jump at the chance to move back to Spain, thus the league could run the risk of segregation with a bevy of Eurocentric teams.

There’s also the worry of talent dilution as a by-product of expansion. The NBA’s mid-90s expansion is often pointed to as the watering down of the league. One of the biggest selling points of the NBA is its consolidation of talent: no other global sport hoards as much of the world’s talent as the NBA. A Euro NBA would eventually raise its level, but at the beginning it would certainly be a couple tiers below.

If you are a betting man, however, forget Madrid. London would likely be the best option. The British Basketball league is nowhere near as established nor as culturally ingrained as the ACB. There would hardly be any real pushback and the NBA has already spread its roots there through the regular season games that have been played in the O2 arena for the past five seasons.

In the interim what we’ll be most likely to see in the near future is some sort of Champions League for basketball. It’s not hard to foresee a basketball equivalent, where some of the best NBA teams face off against their European counterparts in some sort of single-elimination matchup. That will be the starting point and from there, in my best Kevin Garnett impression, anything is possible.

Comments: 30

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

  1. I would like to show appreciation to this writer for rescuing me from this type of condition. As a result of surfing around through the world wide web and getting tricks which are not beneficial, I was thinking my life was well over. Existing without the presence of approaches to the problems you’ve solved by way of your short article is a critical case, and ones which could have badly affected my entire career if I had not noticed your website. Your primary natural talent and kindness in dealing with all the stuff was excellent. I’m not sure what I would have done if I had not come across such a point like this. It’s possible to at this point relish my future. Thanks for your time so much for this professional and results-oriented help. I will not hesitate to propose your web sites to any person who needs guidelines on this area.

  2. I’m commenting to make you understand of the extraordinary encounter my friend’s girl obtained using your webblog. She even learned lots of pieces, including what it is like to have an awesome coaching mindset to make other folks really easily grasp some multifaceted matters. You really exceeded people’s desires. Many thanks for coming up with such priceless, healthy, educational and even cool thoughts on the topic to Ethel.

  3. I must get across my appreciation for your kindness in support of those individuals that should have guidance on this study. Your personal commitment to getting the message throughout had been surprisingly powerful and have without exception made somebody like me to realize their endeavors. Your amazing valuable tips and hints denotes much a person like me and far more to my mates. Warm regards; from everyone of us.

  4. I have to express my respect for your kindness in support of women who must have assistance with this particular concept. Your very own commitment to getting the solution all over had become particularly helpful and has consistently empowered many people like me to realize their pursuits. This warm and friendly help and advice can mean a lot to me and extremely more to my peers. Thanks a ton; from everyone of us.

  5. I simply needed to thank you so much once more. I’m not certain the things that I could possibly have gone through without the actual aspects discussed by you on such a area. It had become the difficult case in my opinion, but considering the very specialised style you resolved the issue took me to leap over fulfillment. I am just happier for this guidance and thus hope that you find out what a powerful job you’re putting in teaching many others through your blog. I’m certain you’ve never met any of us.

  6. I wanted to send you this bit of remark to finally give many thanks once again for these remarkable knowledge you have provided at this time. It is simply extremely open-handed with you in giving easily precisely what many people would’ve sold for an electronic book to make some money on their own, even more so given that you might have done it in the event you wanted. These good ideas likewise acted like the great way to understand that the rest have similar dreams just as mine to figure out somewhat more with regards to this matter. I believe there are some more pleasant opportunities ahead for individuals that looked at your website.

  7. I have to express some thanks to you just for rescuing me from such a incident. Right after searching throughout the the web and coming across basics which were not beneficial, I thought my life was done. Existing devoid of the strategies to the issues you’ve resolved all through your entire website is a critical case, as well as ones which may have negatively affected my entire career if I had not noticed your web page. Your primary knowledge and kindness in controlling all things was valuable. I am not sure what I would’ve done if I hadn’t come upon such a subject like this. It’s possible to now relish my future. Thanks very much for this high quality and sensible help. I won’t be reluctant to endorse your blog post to anybody who will need guide on this area.

  8. I wish to show my admiration for your kind-heartedness in support of folks that have the need for assistance with in this subject matter. Your special commitment to getting the message all through had become particularly important and have specifically helped men and women just like me to achieve their ambitions. Your interesting instruction indicates so much a person like me and still more to my peers. Warm regards; from each one of us.

  9. Thank you for all of the efforts on this site. My daughter really likes setting aside time for investigations and it’s easy to understand why. Many of us notice all about the dynamic means you present vital tips and tricks through this website and therefore recommend participation from visitors about this area of interest then our own girl is truly discovering a lot of things. Take pleasure in the remaining portion of the new year. You are always conducting a good job.

  10. I simply wished to appreciate you once again. I am not sure what I would’ve tried in the absence of the type of suggestions shared by you regarding that topic. This has been a real distressing setting in my view, nevertheless observing a new specialised mode you handled it made me to weep over fulfillment. Now i am thankful for this assistance and even pray you comprehend what a great job that you are doing training men and women all through your website. More than likely you’ve never encountered all of us.

  11. I precisely wanted to thank you very much once again. I do not know what I could possibly have handled without these pointers shown by you relating to such a theme. This has been the distressing dilemma for me personally, nevertheless viewing the very expert tactic you processed that took me to leap for contentment. Now i am grateful for your service and thus sincerely hope you comprehend what a powerful job you were providing educating men and women all through a web site. More than likely you’ve never met all of us.

  12. Thanks a lot for providing individuals with such a remarkable chance to read articles and blog posts from this website. It can be so great and stuffed with fun for me and my office peers to search your blog at the very least three times a week to see the latest stuff you have got. And of course, we are at all times pleased concerning the superb pointers served by you. Certain 4 tips in this post are easily the finest we have all had.

  13. I simply had to thank you so much once again. I’m not certain the things that I could possibly have tried in the absence of the type of tips documented by you over this subject. It was actually a real daunting condition in my position, nevertheless noticing a new professional avenue you treated it took me to jump with contentment. I’m grateful for your advice and as well , trust you find out what a great job you’re undertaking instructing most people via a blog. I am certain you have never got to know all of us.

  14. Thanks for all your labor on this web site. Kate takes pleasure in making time for internet research and it is easy to see why. We notice all about the compelling ways you offer valuable tips by means of this blog and therefore improve response from visitors about this concern so my daughter is always understanding a great deal. Take pleasure in the rest of the year. You’re carrying out a great job.

  15. A lot of thanks for all your valuable hard work on this web page. Debby takes pleasure in setting aside time for research and it is simple to grasp why. We all notice all concerning the compelling way you create valuable ideas through the website and as well strongly encourage response from other people on this topic while my daughter is studying so much. Take pleasure in the remaining portion of the new year. You are always performing a splendid job.

  16. I needed to draft you this very small remark just to give thanks as before with the pretty suggestions you’ve discussed on this page. It’s certainly particularly open-handed with you in giving unhampered what exactly many of us would’ve advertised as an e-book in order to make some cash for themselves, notably now that you might well have done it in case you decided. The inspiring ideas likewise acted to be a fantastic way to be certain that many people have a similar eagerness similar to mine to understand a little more on the topic of this issue. I’m sure there are many more pleasurable times in the future for many who take a look at your blog post.

  17. I simply desired to thank you so much once more. I do not know the things I could possibly have tried without the actual points shared by you about this subject matter. Completely was the scary setting in my view, but looking at your specialized strategy you solved it took me to jump for gladness. I’m grateful for your assistance and thus hope you comprehend what an amazing job you’re undertaking instructing some other people by way of your web page. Most probably you’ve never got to know any of us.

  18. I want to express some thanks to you just for bailing me out of this type of dilemma. Because of looking through the world-wide-web and meeting opinions which are not powerful, I figured my entire life was done. Existing devoid of the approaches to the issues you’ve solved through your good site is a serious case, as well as those which could have in a negative way affected my career if I hadn’t come across your web blog. Your actual mastery and kindness in touching every aspect was priceless. I don’t know what I would’ve done if I had not discovered such a subject like this. I can now look ahead to my future. Thanks a lot so much for your high quality and amazing help. I will not be reluctant to refer your web sites to anybody who ought to have guidance on this matter.

  19. I simply wanted to write down a small word in order to appreciate you for all the nice guides you are placing at this website. My prolonged internet investigation has finally been honored with wonderful concept to exchange with my companions. I ‘d repeat that most of us site visitors actually are very lucky to be in a really good site with so many brilliant professionals with interesting solutions. I feel pretty privileged to have come across the site and look forward to many more pleasurable minutes reading here. Thanks a lot once again for a lot of things.

  20. I have to point out my love for your kindness giving support to persons who absolutely need assistance with this idea. Your special dedication to getting the message along ended up being quite important and has specifically permitted guys just like me to realize their desired goals. Your personal important recommendations can mean so much a person like me and especially to my office workers. Many thanks; from all of us.

  21. Thank you for your entire effort on this blog. Gloria really likes getting into internet research and it’s really easy to see why. A lot of people know all concerning the dynamic way you deliver sensible strategies via this blog and therefore welcome response from some others about this subject so our own girl has been starting to learn a lot. Have fun with the remaining portion of the year. Your conducting a dazzling job.

  22. Thank you a lot for giving everyone an extremely remarkable chance to discover important secrets from this web site. It can be very fantastic and packed with fun for me personally and my office fellow workers to visit your website more than 3 times in 7 days to learn the latest tips you have got. Of course, I’m also usually fulfilled with the fabulous tips and hints you serve. Some 1 points in this posting are without a doubt the most efficient I’ve had.

  23. Outstanding post however I was wondering if you could
    write a litte more on this subject? I’d be very grateful if you
    could elaborate a little bit more. Bless you!

  24. I simply wanted to develop a simple word in order to say thanks to you for those fantastic guidelines you are showing here. My long internet lookup has now been rewarded with good facts and strategies to share with my classmates and friends. I would claim that we website visitors are unequivocally blessed to live in a great place with so many perfect people with insightful suggestions. I feel quite happy to have come across your web page and look forward to so many more thrilling times reading here. Thanks a lot once more for everything.

  25. Amazing! This blog looks just like my old one! It’s
    on a entirely different subject but it has pretty much the same layout and design. Excellent choice
    of colors!

  26. Have you ever considered writing an ebook or guest authoring on other websites?
    I have a blog centered on the same ideas you discuss and would love to have you share some stories/information. I know my readers would enjoy your work.
    If you’re even remotely interested, feel free to shoot me an e mail.

  27. I in addition to my pals were reading the excellent suggestions located on the blog while before long I had an awful suspicion I had not expressed respect to you for them. All of the men were certainly excited to study all of them and already have absolutely been making the most of those things. Thank you for really being really accommodating and also for finding certain impressive tips millions of individuals are really wanting to be aware of. Our honest regret for not expressing gratitude to earlier.

  28. Its such as you learn my mind! You appear to understand so much
    about this, like you wrote the guide in it or something.
    I believe that you just could do with a few percent to pressure the message home a bit, however
    other than that, that is magnificent blog. A fantastic read.
    I’ll certainly be back.

  29. A lot of thanks for all your labor on this website. My niece loves conducting internet research and it is easy to understand why. Many of us know all concerning the powerful method you convey informative ideas via the blog and in addition inspire response from some other people about this area of interest while our simple princess is understanding a lot of things. Enjoy the remaining portion of the new year. Your conducting a splendid job.

  30. Thanks a lot for giving everyone an extremely marvellous chance to read in detail from this website. It can be so sweet and as well , stuffed with fun for me personally and my office friends to visit your web site not less than thrice weekly to read through the fresh secrets you will have. And indeed, we are certainly satisfied considering the striking tactics you give. Certain 3 points in this post are definitely the most suitable I have ever had.