The NBA has long been one of the most popular sports tournaments, not just in the USA but across the world. Of course, being an American competition it is predominantly viewed in the States, but has also managed to garner millions of fans from China to Africa, for example. This has actually been accelerated this year, when the COVID pandemic has made it impossible for fans to attend live matches. In such a scenario, regular fans have had to watch their teams online or on the TV, but other sports fans have also picked up NBA action due to being at home.
Competitions have also seen a lot of interest in highlights and other sports content, during the time earlier this year when live sports was virtually suspended all over the world. Sports fans have also been attracted by other related sectors by being offered content. Online casinos, for example, have been putting up sports and basketball-related games for fans to play, both as a distraction from the current situation, as well as offering an alternative for sports content during the time when live sports was not available.
Esports has been another area which has seen tremendous growth, again largely due to the absence of live sports. Basketball was actually one of the sports which was quite popular on esports platforms, with the NBA 2K series of games seeing thousands of new players during lockdown, as well as the official NBA esports tournament which takes place every year.
Thus, it can be seen how basketball has been a hugely popular sport all over the world, and now, with streaming and telecast options globally, it can now be watched by fans no matter where they are as well. The NBA League Pass is the best option for NBA fans, while games are also broadcast on ESPN and TNT in the USA. The NBA’s own platforms will also carry games, with NBA TV streaming every game of the 2020/21 season. The new season is set to kick off on 22nd December, and there are some excellent games in the first few weeks for fans to get excited.
There will be a TNT doubleheader on opening night, with the next day seeing 13 games in a packed opening to the 2020/21 season. The Washington Wizards will play the Philadelphia 76ers in one of the standout games of this round, seeing as the two teams effectively swapped point guards. John Wall moved to Houston, while Russell Westbrook came to the capital, and thus it will be interesting to see how the Westbrook, Bradley and Beal backcourt team will work together, while Doc Rivers will be in charge of his first game for the Sixers.
One of the league’s most interesting rookies will get a debut as well, with LaMelo Ball set to play for the Charlotte Hornets against the Cleveland Cavaliers. Ball was the 3rd overall pick in this season’s draft, and having played in the likes of Lithuania and Australia, it will be interesting to see if his game can adapt to the NBA.
The number 1 pick in this year’s draft, Anthony Edwards, will also make his debut in the NBA, as his team, the Minnesota Timberwolves, will take on the Detroit Pistons. The Timberwolves will be looking to move forward from last year’s disappointing campaign, where they finished with a 19-45 record, and with the likes of Anthony Towns and D’Angelo Russell on their roster, they should make a better fist of it this time around.
These are just three of the standout games over the first couple of days of the new NBA season. It will be fascinating to see how teams adapt to this season and which outfits are able to come out on top in time for the playoffs.
Make sure to check out our Bulls forum for the latest on the team.