MEXICO CITY – NBA G League USA, a team of top talent from the NBA’s official minor league, will play the Mexico National Team in the NBA G League International Challenge presented by Kumho Tire at NBA All-Star 2018 in Los Angeles. The first international exhibition game at NBA All-Star will take place on Sunday, Feb. 18 at 4:30 p.m. ET at the Los Angeles Convention Center. NBA G League President Malcolm Turner and Mexico Basketball Federation General Manager José Reyes Ronfini made the announcement today during a press conference at Arena Ciudad de Mexico.
The NBA G League International Challenge will replace the traditional NBA G League All-Star Game, which debuted at NBA All-Star 2007 in Las Vegas.
“We are thrilled to showcase an innovative international exhibition game between top NBA G League players and the Mexico National Team at NBA All-Star,” said Turner. “This first-of-its-kind event will be an outstanding display of high-quality basketball and spirited competition for our fans around the world to enjoy.”
NBA G League USA players are also expected to compete for USA Basketball in FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Americas Qualifiers against Cuba on Feb. 23 and Puerto Rico on Feb. 26. Coached by Jeff Van Gundy and his USA Basketball World Cup Qualifying Team staff, NBA G League USA will be selected by the six-member USA Basketball Men’s World Cup Qualifying Committee. The committee is made up of appointees by USA Basketball and the NBA G League. The 12-player team will be announced in advance of the game.
The Mexico National Team is currently 15th in the FIBA World Ranking and holds a 1-1 record in FIBA World Cup Qualifiers. The NBA G League International Challenge will help Mexico prepare for its 2019 FIBA World Cup Qualifiers against Puerto Rico on Feb. 23 and Cuba on Feb. 26.
“It is an honor for Mexican Basketball to partner with the NBA’s official minor league,” said Gilberto Hernandez, President of the Mexico Basketball Federation. “The exhibition game between the Mexico National Team and the NBA G League USA team is a unique opportunity for the development of our game as well as a great motivation for the young Mexican lovers of this sport who dream of reaching the NBA one day.”
Fans around the world can follow the game on social media on Twitter @nbagleague and @mexbasquet. Domestic and international broadcast information will be announced at a later date.
Tickets for the NBA G League International Challenge presented by Kumho Tire will be available at a later date. Fans can log on to www.NBAEvents.com to sign up for news and ticket sales information.
About the NBA G League
The NBA’s official minor league, the NBA G League prepares players, coaches, officials, trainers and front-office staff for the NBA while acting as the league’s research and development laboratory. Featuring 26 teams with direct affiliations with NBA franchises for the 2017-18 season, the league offers elite professional basketball at an affordable price in a fun, family-friendly atmosphere. An all-time-high 44 percent of all NBA players at the end of the 2016-17 season boasted NBA G League experience. In fostering the league’s connection to the community, its teams, players and staff promote health and wellness, support local needs and interests, and assist in educational development through NBA Cares programs. NBA G League games are available on ESPN’s family of networks and NBA TV.