Sacramento Kings to play preseason game in Vancouver as part of NBA Canada Series
The Sacramento Kings will play one of their preseason games next season in the Pacific Northwest of Canada. The league announced that the Kings will take part in its third annual NBA Canada Series and will take on the Toronto Raptors at Rogers Arena in Vancouver on Oct. 5.
This game is the third preseason contest that the Kings will play off American soil. A week after their match-up with the Raptors in Canada, the Kings will travel to China to play the Brooklyn Nets in Shanghai on Oct. 12 and in Beijing on Oct. 15. They’ll also make their annual preseason visit to Las Vegas to take on the Los Angeles Lakers at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Oct. 24.
The NBA Canada series celebrates basketball with live games, interactive fan events and community outreach programs designed to promote the game in Canada. In the past three years, seven Canadians have been drafted into the league, eight of whom are currently members of NBA rosters. The influx of Canadian players into the NBA will continue with several prospects (Nik Stauskas, Andrew Wiggins and Tyler Ennis) all expected to be selected in the first round of this year’s draft.
“We have recently seen huge growth in the number of Canadians playing at a high level in the NBA, and the Canada Series is one of our most important programs as it brings live NBA games to our fans outside of Toronto,” said Dan MacKenzie, Vice President and General Manager, NBA Canada. “Thank you to Montreal and Vancouver for hosting this year’s series, which features two great matchups.”
The city of Vancouver was once home to the Memphis Grizzlies. From 1995 to 2001, the franchise played its first six seasons in British Columbia before relocating to Tennessee. Kings Director of Player Personnel Shareef Abdur-Rahim spent the prime of his career as the face of the Vancouver Grizzlies before being traded to the Atlanta Hawks in 2001.