IT will take some time before the NBA plays another preseason game in the Philippines.
NBA Philippines managing director Carlo Singson admitted a preseason game in Manila won’t happen anytime soon, even after the success of the NBA Global Games in 2013 which featured the Houston Rockets and the Indiana Pacers at the Mall of Asia Arena.
“The answer is, perhaps,” said Singson on Tuesday during an interview at the NBA Café in Taguig City announcing the opening of an NBA office in Manila. “It’s not a yes, it’s not a no. But it’s somewhere down the line.”
The NBA played its first preseason game in the Philippines on October 10, 2013 when the Rockets, starring James Harden and Dwight Howard, beat the Paul George-led Indiana Pacers, 116-96.
While the NBA declared the Manila preseason game as a success, Singson admitted they are still in the evaluation stage of a repeat of the event. The affable NBA official also said they are working with their partners to make another preseason game a reality.
“It was a great success,” said Singson, referring to the 2013 preseason game. “We will continue to evaluate the opportunity to bring another game to the Philippines.”
“Certainly, our fans demand it so we are working with our partners to look into that possibility,” he added.
Singson, however, said bringing an NBA preseason game in Manila, or any league game outside the United States and Canada for that matter, is a challenging endeavor that needs a lot of planning.
“Bringing NBA preseason games anywhere is very expensive and a resource-heavy endeavor for the league. We are a lean organization and conducting preseason games all over the world in a short period of time is taxing on resources.
“It’s not something that we snap our fingers and say, 'We play a preseason game (overseas) next year,'” he said.
But Singson assured NBA fans that holding preseason games in the Philippines is definitely in their plans.
“It’s a challenge but we will continue to support them because we believe it is essential to the expansion of the NBA across the world,” he said. “We will not be stopping holding preseason games anytime soon. We are just saying that we won’t hold a preseason game anytime soon.
“But who knows?” said Singson.