Over a span of 15 days starting this week, the Euroleague Basketball World Tour 2015 will see five of Europe’s signature clubs travel the globe to compete in 10 games on four continents. This season’s edition of the World Tour will have many of the components of recent years, including Real Madrid heading to South America for the 2015 FIBA Euroleague Intercontinental Cup, Panathinaikos Athens returning to Asia, Fenerbahce Istanbul embarking on trip to North America and Olimpia Milan and Real Madrid playing host for the NBA Global Games. The newest addition to the annual World Tour will see Maccabi FOX Tel Aviv and Olimpia Milan squaring off twice for the first-ever games between Euroleague opponents in the United States.
Reigning Turkish Airlines Euroleague champion Real Madrid will play the first games on the World Tour against Bauru of Brazil in the FIBA Euroleague Intercontinental Cup’s third edition since its re-birth. Bauru was the 2015 FIBA Liga de las Americas champion. Both games will be played at Ginasio Iberapuera in Brazil’s largest city, Sao Paulo. The opening game is scheduled for Friday, September 25, with Game 2 of the two-game total-points series taking place two days later.
The World Tour’s focus shifts to the East on Monday, September 28, when Panathinaikos Athens, the Euroleague’s winningest team this century, meets Zhejiang Lions at Hangzhou Stadium in Hangzhou, China, for the opening leg of this season’s Euroleague Basketball Asia Tour. The Greens, who also represented Euroleague Basketball in this same event two years ago, will wrap up their trip going against Guangdong Tigers at Macau Tap Seac Multisport Pavillion in Macau, China, on Wednesday, September 30.
The history first game ever between European opponents in North America takes place at Chicago’s United Center on Thursday, October 1 between Maccabi FOX Tel Aviv and Olimpia Milano, two storied former Euroleague champions who met in back-to-back championship games in 1987 and 1988, not to mention the 2014 playoffs. They will complete their visit to the United States with a rematch at an epicenter of world basketball, New York’s Madison Square Garden, on Sunday afternoon, October 4.
Just as Maccabi and Milano finish their trip, Fenerbahce Istanbul arrives for a pair of preseason games against NBA teams in the United States. Fenerbahce will face the Brooklyn Nets on Monday, October 5 at Barclays Center and Oklahoma City Thunder on Friday, October 9 at Chesapeake Energy Arena. The games mark the fourth season in a row that Fenerbahce plays an NBA team in the preseason, but the first time it will do so in the United States.
In between Fenerbahce’s two games, both Olimpija Milano and Real Madrid will be back home in time to host the Boston Celtics in the NBA Global Games. Milan will face Boson on Tuesday, October 6, at Mediolanum Forum. Madrid will play Boston two days later at Barclaycard Center in the Spanish capital.
As every year, the Euroleague Basketball World Tour is more than exhibitions of world-class basketball. Among the teams’ community-relations activities while abroad are One Team events that will bring the benefits of Euroleague Basketball’s corporate social responsibility programme to new audiences. There will also be basketball clinics and of course some time for tourism as the Euroleague Basketball World Tour brings the best of European basketball on and off the court to fans worldwide.