The visit of the NBA to London on Monday, in the form of a preseason friendly between the Chicago Bulls and the Utah Jazz, could be seen as an important step in the global growth of the American sports franchise.
Not only did the action on the court deliver in almost script-perfect fashion -- with British-national Luol Deng top-scoring on the night and a buzzer-beating basket from rookie James Johnson sealing a 102-101 win for Chicago -- but crucially, for the first time in the three-year history of the fixture, the attention from the British media matched the passion of the sell-out crowd.
Coverage of the game was handled by the BBC along with all major British newspapers which, on a day when NBA commissioner David Stern announced the franchise's intention to play a league game in London within two years, added to a feeling of gathering momentum of interest. Check out CNN's courtside view. Read full article »