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The weirdest venues the NBA has ever played in

The weirdest venues the NBA has ever played in

The preseason of 2022-23 campaign of the NBA will start at the Super Saitama Arena in Japan with a duel between the Golden State Warriors of Stephen Curry against the Washington Wizards by the Japanese Rui Hachimura.

The NBA held 12 regular season games in Japan between 1990 and 2003 in the cities of Tokyo, Yokohama and Saitama. The last games played in Japanese territory were in preseason in 2019 when the Raptors and Rockets split the two-game series to one victory apiece.

Japan, Mexico, the United Kingdom and France are the only countries that have held NBA preseason and regular season games. With this in mind, in AS we present you the most unusual venues in which the NBA has played games.

First match outside the USA

The first basketball game with NBA teams was an exhibition between the Washington Bullets and Maccabi Tel Aviv at the Yad Eliyahu Arena in Israel. The commitment was played on September 7, 1978 in front of 10 thousand fans.

The Asian team beat the Americans 98-97 with great performances from Miki Berkovich (26pts) and aulcie perry (17 sts and 8 rbs). For the Bullets, Mitch Kupchak was the most outstanding player with 21 units and 11 rebounds.

Matches in the Soviet Union

In 1988, the Atlanta Hawks played three games against a team from the Soviet Union led by the Lithuanian Sarunas Marciulionis and the Ukrainian Alexander Volkov in three different venues on July 25, 27 and 30.

The first game, with a score of 85-84 in favor of the Hawks, was played at the Tbilisi Sports Palace, in the capital of Georgia; the second, with a victory in extra time for the NBA team by 110-105, was at Sporto Rumai in Vilnius, Lithuania.

The Soviet squad won the last match, held at the Lenin Sports Palace in Moscow, thanks to 35 points from Volkov. The Ukrainian would later play for the Hawks in the 1989-90 and 1991-92 seasons.

The Caribbean of the Heat

The NBA has played several games in the Central American area and the first time was in Nassau, Bahamas. In 1991, the Bullets traveled to the Bahamian capital to face the Miami Heat, who defeated them 109-98.

Two years later, the team at Miami traveled to San Juan, Puerto Rico to beat the Denver Nuggets 109-103 at the Puerto Rico Coliseum. The first game in the Dominican Republic also included the Heat. Miami faced the Minnesota Timberwolves at the Palacio de los Deportes Virgilio Travieso Soto on October 11, 2002.


October 11, 2008 was an unusual night for the NBA as they played a preseason game outdoors when the Denver Nuggets and the Phoenix Suns met at Indian Wells Garden.

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