It might be time for the players to start brushing up on their Italian, because the Boston Celtics will be playing a preseason game in Milan. The game will take place on Oct. 6 as part of NBA Global Games Europe 2015.
The Celtics will face off against three-time Euroleague Champion and 26-time Italian League Champion Olimpia Milano at the Mediolanum Forum.
We're just 4 months away from Celtics basketball! Get excited! https://t.co/c6XgOHgREQ— CelticsBlog (@celticsblog) June 3, 2015
This will be the 7th time that the Celtics have played overseas in Europe, with the last coming in 2012 in a preseason game in Milan against Emporio Armani.
"On behalf of the Celtics organization, we are proud to return to Milan for NBA Global Games 2015," Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge said in the league's press release. "I have particularly fond memories of playing in Europe almost 30 years ago, and I'm sure our current players will relish this unique opportunity."
Former Celtics coach Doc Rivers credited a preseason trip to Europe in 2007 as a primary factor in that squad forming the chemistry they needed to go on to win a championship that season. Adding veteran stars Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen to join captain Paul Pierce certainly had a lot to do with raising banner 17, but few expected that team to gel as quickly as they did. The trip overseas helped forge an immediate bond that helped propel them to their early success.
Will a trip to Europe help this new group of young Celtics find their own form of Ubuntu?
The league's release also points out that former Celtic MarShon Brooks is a member of the Olimpia Milano team. Brooks appeared in 10 games for Boston during the 2013-14 season after being acquired from the Nets in the blockbuster trade that sent Pierce and Garnett to Brooklyn. Brooks was then packaged with Jordan Crawford in a three-team deal that sent them to the Golden State Warriors and brought Joel Anthony and a pair of draft picks to Boston.
The Celtics are also scheduled to play a regular season game against the Sacramento Kings in Mexico City on Dec. 3 later this year.