NBA London: New York Knicks to face Washington Wizards at the O2 Arena in 2019

James Benge
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The New York Knicks will face the Washington Wizards in the NBA’s ninth regular season game at London’s O2 Arena early next year.

The Eastern Conference match-up between the sides on January 17 will be the first time Washington have played in London. New York are more regular visitors to the capital, playing in 2013 against the Detroit Pistons and in 2015 against the Milwaukee Bucks.

Knicks’ guard Tim Hardaway Jr. was part of the latter side and says of the prospect of making amends in front of a London crowd: “I am excited to return.

“We had a great experience during our last visit in 2015 playing in front of passionate fans and are looking forward to another trip overseas.”

Washington Wizards’ All-Star guard and captain John Wall says it will be “an honour” to lead his side out in the capital.

“I look forward to connecting with our fans in London and using the experience to further bond as a team,” he added.

European basketball fans will hope that Knicks’ star forward Kristaps Porzingis, whose jersey was the ninth best-selling in Europe last year, makes a recovery from the torn left ACL he suffered in February in time to make the flight to London, not least because, the Latvian aside, New York are lacking in star power.

That is not the case with the Wizards, whose current back court of Wall and Bradley Beal is among the most exciting in the NBA.

NBA London 2018 | Boston Celtics vs Philadelphia 76ers | 11/01/2018

NBA London 2018 | Boston Celtics vs Philadelphia 76ers | 11/01/2018

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    Both teams square up in the fourth quarter

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    Aron Baynes of the Boston Celtics drives to the basket

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    Jack Whitehall with Arsenal's Hector Bellerin

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    Richaun Holmes of the 76ers

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    Naomie Harris

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    T.J. McConnell of the 76ers takes on Terry Rozier of the Celtics

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    Hector Bellerin

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    Nicholas Hoult (L)

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    Xenia Tchoumi

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    Kyrie Irving of the Celtics takes on Jerryd Bayless of the 76ers

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    Celtics guard-forward Jaylen Brown, right, drives past 76ers guard Jerryd Bayless

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    Nicholas Hoult (L)

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    Daniel Theis of the Celtics

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    Tinie Tempah

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    Hector Bellerin, Nacho Montreal and Antoine Griezmann

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    Chelsea's Eden Hazard

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    Jack WhitehallJack Whitehall

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    Raheem Sterling and Paige Milian

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    Troy Deeney

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    Kyrie Irving of the Celtics holds off Ben Simmons of the 76ers

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    Sir Alex Ferguson

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    Leigh-Anne Pinnock and Andre Gray

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    Robert Pires and Jessica Lemarie-Pires

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    Wilfried Zaha with Crystal Palace chairman Steve Parish

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    Sir Bradley Wiggins and his son

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    Thibaut Courtois

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    Sir Alex Ferguson

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    Arsenal's Hector Bellerin and Nacho Monreal

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    Chelsea star Eden Hazard

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    Kevin De Bruyne

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    A view of The O2

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    Arsenal's Hector Bellerin and Nacho Monreal

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    Arsenal duo Hector Bellerin and Nacho Monreal

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    Arsenal's Hector Bellerin and Nacho Monreal

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    Thibaut Courtois

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    Michael Ballack

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    Shkodran Mustafi

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    Marcos Alonso

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    Olivier Giroud

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    Leigh-Anne Pinnock and Andre Gray

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    Nicholas Hoult

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    Will Poulter (L) and Kola Bokinni

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    Ilkay Gundogan and Shkodran Mustafi

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    Xenia Tchoumi

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    NBA Commissioner Adam Silver

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Tickets will go on sale later in the year and are expected to sell out swiftly, such is the interest in the NBA both within the UK and across the rest of the continent. That there is only one regular season match-up on the continent every year only makes them more prized, but it is unlikely that Europe will see multiple games any time soon.

“There could be [more than one game a year] but ultimately it’s not clear that doing one-off games is something that scales,” NBA commissioner