76ers and Celtics to play regular-season NBA game in London
Boston Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas (4) is covered by Philadelphia 76ers center Jahlil Okafor (8) on a drive to the basket during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game in Boston. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
NBA press release
LONDON – The National Basketball Association (NBA) and Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG) announced today that the NBA London Game 2018 will feature the Philadelphia 76ers and Boston Celtics playing a regular-season game at The O2 on Thursday, Jan. 11.
The game will be broadcast live on BT Sport in the UK, by the NBA’s broadcast partners across EMEA and on NBA LEAGUE PASS International.
The Philadelphia 76ers’ current roster features 2016-17 NBA All-Rookie First Team members Joel Embiid (Cameroon), who led all rookies in points and rebounds and Dario Šarić (Croatia), who was twice named Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month during the 2016-17 season, as well as 2016 and 2017 No. 1 overall draft picks, Ben Simmons (Australia) and Markelle Fultz (U.S.), respectively. The Celtics’ roster currently features two-time NBA All-Star Isaiah Thomas (U.S.), who last season led the team in scoring with a career-high 28.9 points per game, 2017 NBA All-Star Gordon Hayward (U.S.) and four-time NBA All-Star Al Horford (Dominican Republic), who last season led the team in rebounds.
The game will mark the league’s eighth regular-season game in London and the Celtics’ second game in the capital, having played a preseason game against the Minnesota Timberwolves in 2007. The 76ers will be playing their second game in the UK and first game in London, having previously played a preseason game in Manchester against the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2013.
In addition to the oncourt action, the NBA London Game 2018 will feature a variety of interactive fan activities, NBA Cares community outreach initiatives and Jr. NBA basketball programming that will bring the NBA experience to fans in London.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver:
“This will be our 16th game in London where our events have become an annual opportunity for basketball fans across Europe to come together and share their passion for the NBA.”
NBA EMEA Senior Vice President and Managing Director Benjamin Morel:
“We are proud to announce the eighth NBA regular-season game in London featuring two storied franchises in the Philadelphia 76ers and the Boston Celtics. Our established tradition of hosting NBA games in London has a real impact on the popularity of the sport both here in the UK and with fans visiting from Europe, and we look forward to showcasing the excitement, athleticism and incredible competition of our league in a truly authentic atmosphere.”
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan:
“I am delighted the NBA continues to bring the world’s best basketball to our great city in what has now become a well-established and eagerly anticipated event on London’s sporting calendar. I know Londoners will be thrilled to see the Philadelphia 76ers and Boston Celtics up close at our world-famous O2. I am determined to make sure London remains the sporting capital of the world, and a key part of that is bringing major sports events here. It is also important that those major events provide important community benefits, which the NBA does so well. I look forward to welcoming visitors from the UK, Europe and across the globe and showing once again that London is open.”
Vice President of AEG Sports Europe Yanni Andreopoulos:
“We are proud to host another exciting NBA game in London. This event is a cornerstone in the calendar that has cemented The O2’s reputation for hosting the best sporting action, as well as its outstanding music and entertainment content. We look forward to welcoming the Boston Celtics and the Philadelphia 76ers for what will be, I’m sure, an amazing game.”
Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid:
“I look forward to coming back to London with the Sixers after visiting for the first time this summer. We are a young, hungry team and will be sure to give the fans an exciting game against Boston in January.”
Boston Celtics point guard Isaiah Thomas:
“It's very exciting for our team and the whole Celtics organization to compete in front of our loyal fans in London. I can’t wait to connect with them at the NBA London Game 2018 and hopefully make new fans in the process.”