Abu Dhabi ready to host first NBA games in UAE


Abu Dhabi is all set to host two NBA preseason games, marking the first games played in the Arabian Gulf.

It will feature Atlanta Hawks and 2021’s NBA champions Milwaukee Bucks at Etihad Arena, Yas Island in Abu Dhabi on October 6 and October 8.

"NBA coming to Abu Dhabi will be great for the sport of basketball," highlighted Shaquille O’Neal, a four-time NBA champion and the ambassador for the event.

"Bringing players like Giannis Antetokounmpo and Trae Young overseas, for local kids to see up close, will only spark their interest in the sport. This will certainly help nurture a generation of future talent with more countries playing the sport.

"Pre-season games are very important, especially for the younger players and new additions on each team. Also, it gets repetitive going up against your teammates in training camp every day, so any time you can simulate real, in-game situations against other players, it is valuable. And these guys will put on a show for the people of Abu Dhabi, it is just what they do."

O’Neal will attend the NBA Abu Dhabi Games 2022, participate in youth development programming, and interact with local fans during the week of the games.

The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer will also appear at the “NBA District," a first-of-its-kind interactive fan event held at Manarat Al Saadiyat in the capital from October 5-9 in conjunction with the NBA Abu Dhabi Games 2022.

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