The NBA game in Paris between Detroit and Chicago says it all about France’s importance

DAVID JENSEN/Getty Images via AFP CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA – DECEMBER 14: Detroit Pistons #7 Killian Hayes takes the ball to the court during the second half against the Charlotte Hornets at the Spectrum Center on December 14, 2022 in Charlotte, North Carolina. NOTE TO USERS: Users expressly acknowledge and agree that, by downloading and or using this photo, Users agree to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. David Jensen/Getty Images/AFP (Photo by David Jensen/GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA/Getty Images via AFP)

DAVID JENSEN/Getty Images via AFP

French point guard Killian Hayes, during the NBA game between the Charlotte Hornets and Detroit Pistons, December 14, 2022.

BASKETBALL – For the second time in its history, France has had the honor of hosting an NBA regular season game. After his first foray into the American basketball league in Paris in January 2020, just before the Covid-19 pandemic, with the Milwaukee Bucks-Charlotte Hornets meeting, returns to the capital this Thursday, January 19.

At 9pm, the Chicago Bulls and Detroit Pistons face off at the AccorArena, in a match reminiscent of the 90s, even if the two teams, currently ranked 10th and 14th in the Eastern Conference, are far from their former glory days today. previous years.

Hence, if the stakes of this encounter appear to be confined to the court, it is above all necessary to be keen on the symbolism surrounding this event, which allows French basketball to see itself more rewarded with this NBA choice to return to Paris.

For what it calls the “NBA Global Games,” the American league has stopped in Mexico every year since 2014 (except in 2020 and 2021), but Paris is the only stop outside the Americas for this season. The French capital takes over from London, which has hosted eight matches between 2011 and 2019. And this fixture – which sold out at breakneck speed – should herald another one next year, as entrusted to HuffPost Jacques Monclar, consultant for beIN SPORTS, the channel that broadcasts game nights and entire NBA seasons. This was also suggested by league boss Adam Silver.

What describes France’s influence in international basketball and in the NBA, it has been undeniable for a number of years and that the sensational arrival of Victor Wembanyama announced next year in the league will only accentuate.

France, a player from the Metropolitans of Boulogne-Levallois, is very likely to become the number 1 player in the future and is already qualified as“outer space” by league star LeBron James, is the fount of all fantasies with his incredible physique – 2.21m tall at 19 years old – and his highly unusual game, especially in attack. “Highlights” of the action in the French championship have been circulating on social networks and have been widely covered in the American media.

Tony Parker shows the way, Victor Wembanyama will make it shine

If the “Wemby” hype should break out in the United States next fall, cementing France’s place in the NBA, the latter has been building bit by bit, gradually, since the emergence of Tony Parker in 2001. The French keeper led the way by winning the title early in 2003 with the San Antonio Spurs, before adding three more titles in 2005, 2007 and 2014.

Confident in the performance of “TP” and the possibility of success in the world’s largest league, French players have gradually landed there, so that every season now, about ten French players play on American courts.

At the start of the 2022-2023 fiscal year, with nine representatives, France offered Australia the second largest contingent of international players after Canada (23 players). Among them, Nicolas Batum (Los Angeles Clippers), Rudy Gobert (Minnesota Timberwolves) and Evan Fournier (New York Knicks) stand out with huge contracts, a sign of the importance these three players have acquired in the league over time. .

“We had a time when we had NBA players who reached the NBA finals, from Mike Pietrus to Ian Mahinmi, of course with Tony Parker, Boris Diaw… We had players who were voted best defenders (like) Joachim Noah. (…) It’s not an invention that France is the land of the NBA “want to clarify with HuffPost Jacques Monclar.

And succession appears assured, with, in addition to the arrival of Victor Wembanyama in a few months, Killian Hayes’ breakthrough season with the Detroit Pistons, which the Parisian crowd will witness this Thursday night. “It’s really lucky to be home, playing in front of my family and friends, who haven’t seen me play in a long time.”the 21-year-old leader rejoiced.

Finally, the influence of French players in the NBA has taken a step forward for the French team, which has been in the top spot for four years: third in the 2019 World Cup, 2020 Olympic finalist and Eurobasket finalist. in 2022. A great showing is now expected at home for the 2024 Olympics in Paris, with Cameroon’s potential reinforcement from the Philadelphia 76ers Joël Embiid, who acquired French citizenship last summer and who could cap for the Blues.

And when in addition footballer Kylian Mbappé was given a standing ovation by the entire room for his humble presence during the recent NBA game between the Brooklyn Nets and the San Antonio Spurs, really, France isn’t done talking about it in US attorneys…

See also at HuffPost :

Leave a Reply

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