The Indiana Pacers and Sacramento Kings will play two pre-season games in Mumbai next year, the first NBA games to take place in India, it has been announced.
Cricket-mad India has long been on the radar of the NBA.
The association runs an academy near New Delhi, has arranged the visits of 35 current and former NBA and WNBA players since 2006 and opened an office in Mumbai in 2011.
"Our inaugural NBA India Games will help [unleash] the enormous basketball potential in a country with a thriving sports culture and a growing, young and engaged population," NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said on Thursday.
Fittingly, one of the teams playing the games will be the Kings, who have the NBA's first Indian-born majority owner and Mumbai-native Vivek Ranadive as its chairman.
"The sport is experiencing tremendous growth in India and we are excited about continuing to expand the NBA's reach to fans across the globe," Ranadive said in a statement.
More than 350 live NBA games are shown in India each season, including 78 with Hindi commentary.
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