Joe Lacob had been resting for quite some time. Inside a private airport outside of the city of Shenzhen on Thursday night, about an hour’s drive from where his Golden State Warriors had fallen to the Minnesota Timberwolves in a preseason affair that tipped off at 2 p.m. local time, the majority owner of the defending champions leapt out of his recliner seat as if he had sat on a thumbtack. Draymond Green had entered the room, and Lacob — whose weary Warriors team wouldn’t reach the hotel until the a.m. hours — was more than happy to give up his seat as both teams endured a 90-minute delay on the team’s charter flight. Coaches, executives and players from both teams, who were still dealing with the 15-hour time difference, shared air space inside the lounge room. Some talked and others let their eyes shut for a much-needed nap. Players from both teams killed time while socializing so far away from home, with no shortage of shared griping and groaning along the way. And with good reason. Twenty-three sellouts later, and with the 24th coming on Sunday evening at the Mercedes Benz Arena in Shanghai, these games in China are a rousing success in almost every fashion. But as has been so evident at every turn, this kind of blessing-and-a-curse trip comes at a cost when it comes to the actual basketball. Especially when you factor in the NBA’s shortened preseason.
NBA games in China a rousing success, but come at a cost
USA Today | Oct 7