The New York Yankees and the Chicago White Sox turned fantasy into reality when they faced off a month ago at Field of Dreams in Dyersville, Iowa, the site of the 1989 Kevin Costner film.
Now, NBA fans are asking when they can see Giannis and LeBron tip-off under the stars?
Howard Beck, the host of The Crossover, raised the question during his interview Friday with Evan Wasch, executive vice president of basketball strategy & analytics, and Tom Carelli Sr. VP of game schedule management.
“Whether it’s blacktop and injury concerns or a wooden court outside with humidity concerns and moisture that can get on the court, being beholden to rain and all of those things would become a consideration,” said Wasch.
Despite the logistical challenges, it wouldn’t be the league’s first attempt to hit the hardwood outdoors.
“We did play a preseason game a number of years ago in Phoenix. So we’ve explored it, and we’ll continue to talk about it.”
The first game was played in 2008 between the Phoenix Suns and Denver Nuggets at Indian Wells Tennis Garden in Indian Wells, CA.
Seventy degrees at tip-off, temperatures would drop through the evening with winds picking up to 15 mph.
“It was colder than a mother—— out there. And you can quote me on that,” Suns center Shaquille O’Neal, said at the time.
The Suns would do it again in 2009 against the Curry-led Golden State Warriors and play the final outdoor contest in 2010 against the Dallas Mavericks.
These games, however, were more reminiscent of when the Detroit Pistons played in the Silverdome than a blacktop duel.
The Knicks and Nets squaring off at Rucker Park, or the Lakers, and Clippers battling it out on Venice Beach, would bring massive hype to the league, which has shown a great deal of resilience and creative thinking during the COVID-19 pandemic.
OTD (2002) A month after completing a 3-peat with the Lakers, Kobe Bryant put on a show at Rucker Park!pic.twitter.com/4iaNglA3YQ
— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) July 18, 2020
Though Beck’s guest agreed the outdoor matchups would be incredibly appealing, there are no plans to schedule any outdoor games for now.