Hawks, Magic headed to Mexico City for NBA regular season game Nov. 9

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Atlanta Hawks v Orlando Magic

Atlanta Hawks v Orlando Magic

Mexico City will see two NBA stars capable of show-stopping games — Trae Young and Paolo Banchero — on teams that fans and pundits could be undervaluing in the East.

The Atlanta Hawks and Orlando Magic will face off on Nov. 9 at Arena CDMX in Mexico City in the NBA’s annual trip to the city. The NBA has been conducting games in Mexico City since 1992, and this will be the 32nd game in the city, more than any other city outside of the USA and Canada.

“With the Magic having been to London twice, Japan, China, Brazil and Mexico City previously, we love representing the NBA and the City of Orlando when we have the opportunity to play in these Global Games,” Orlando Magic CEO Alex Martins said in a statement. “We’ve had the opportunity to be in Mexico City before, and we know the passion of the fans and are really looking forward to bringing our team back to Mexico City to play.”

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The NBA is bringing plenty of star power south of the border with Rookie of the Year Banchero plus Franz Wagner, Wendell Carter Jr. and just drafted Anthony Black. The Hawks are coming off their third straight trip to the playoffs behind the All-Star backcourt of Young and Dejounte Murray.

Mexico City has a thriving NBA fandom and continues to come up as a secondary option when the NBA gets to voting on — and likely approving — expansion in a couple of years (Seattle is a lock for a new team and Las Vegas is considered a strong frontrunner for the second franchise). NBA Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum has said Mexico City “
has to be in consideration” for potential expansion.

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The NBA now has a G-League there, the Mexico City Capitanes, who finished 18-14 in league play last season. The team’s roster included Shabazz Napier, Kenneth Faried, Alfonzo McKinnie and Mason Jones.

Mexico City is often overlooked by its neighbors to the north as one of the world’s great cities — its food, history, architecture and people make a vibrant and fascinating metropolitan area. The NBA understands the power of Mexico as a potential market and set up a dedicated regional office based in Mexico City. There’s also an NBA Store in a trendy Mexico City shopping district (Mexico is the fourth largest market outside the United States for NBA.com sales).

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It’s why the NBA returns every season to the city for a game, and this year the league is bringing plenty of young stars.

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