French NBA enthusiasts have been waiting for this for two and a half years.

The announcement fell on Tuesday: a regular season match will take place on January 19, 2023 at Paris-Bercy, between the Chicago Bulls and the Detroit Pistons.

The last dates back to January 24, 2020, between the Milwaukee Bucks of Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Charlotte Hornets.

The North American Basketball League had promised this return, but the Covid-19 pandemic delayed its plans.

“Without a shadow of a doubt, Paris has a huge basketball community.

Every time we go, I'm just impressed by the fans that we see, and the way they follow the NBA season, "said former Bulls point guard BJ Armstrong, three-time champion (1991, 1992, 1993).

100,000 ticket requests in 2020

In January 2020, 15,000 lucky ones (out of more than 100,000 requests) attended the match between the Bucks and the Hornets.

For the North American league, this meeting is the 34th disputed outside the United States and Canada, in what it calls the "Global Games", launched in November 1990 and hosted in four countries: Japan and Mexico in the 1990s and early 2000s, then Mexico and Great Britain in the 2010s, and finally France.

Before regular season games, the NBA was exported outside its territory for preseason games or promotional tours in the 1980s. Paris hosted some in 1991, with Magic Johnson's Lakers, who notably faced Richard Dacoury's CSP Limoges.

The latter had also had the chance a few years later, in 1997, to face Bercy also another NBA legend, Michael Jordan, during a pre-season promotional tournament between the Bulls and PSG Basket.

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