The National Basketball Association (NBA) is now setting its foot in India where the league has been gaining a lot of fans lately. The Sacramento Kings are playing the Indiana Pacers at the NSCI Dome in Mumbai on Friday and Saturday. The games played will be two pre-season games and not a part of the 2019-20 regular season that will begin later this month. This is the first time an American Sports League is setting its foot on Indian soil. If it is your first time watching the NBA, here are five things you might want to know about the sport and the league.
The NBA game has four quarters and each lasts for 12 minutes. A single game technically runs for 48 minutes but in-game situations like fouls, time-outs, the ball going out of bounds, etc. make the game go on for a length of two to two and a half hours. After two quarters, players also get a rest period of 15-minutes. In other words – half time.
The league consists of 30 teams divided into two Conferences of 15 each. The league final is played between the winner of the Western Conference and the Eastern Conference. The top eight teams from each conference battle each other out in the First Round, Conference Semis, and the Conference Finals. The winners of both the Conference Finals play The NBA Finals. The Finals consists of seven games where the team winning the most games takes the Larry O'Brien trophy home.
The NBA teams loop in fresh players in the NBA Draft which takes place in June, every year. There are two rounds in the Draft and each round has 30 picks. Other than this, the teams can also trade players with other teams. A player who is not contracted to any team is a free agent.
In India, the league is broadcasted by the Sony Network and matches can be watched on channels in the Sony Network. These include - Sony Six, Sony ESPN, Ten1, and Ten3. The matches can also be streamed online on the Sony LIV platform.
The Toronto Raptors are the defending NBA champions. They faced the Golden State Warriors in the 2018-19 Finals. They won the league in the sixth match of the Finals after having the lead on Warriors 4-2.