The New Zealand Breakers are set to play two NBA teams, the Portland Trailblazers and the Utah Jazz, in a trip to the United States. However, this timing has raised concerns about the impact on their Australian NBL campaign.
The Breakers are currently two games into a 20-round Australian NBL season, with one win and one loss. Playing NBA teams in the middle of their domestic season presents challenges. This is the third time the Breakers have faced NBA opponents, but previous encounters were during preseason.
Breakers coach Mody Maor acknowledges that this situation is tricky and could be either a blessing or a hindrance to the team. He believes it’s an opportunity for the team to strengthen and improve, provided they approach it with the right mindset and work on their weaknesses.
The Breakers have already faced disruptions due to players participating in the FIBA World Cup in August and September. Maor hopes that this two-week trip to the US will help the team address areas that need improvement.
While the Breakers face the Trailblazers and Jazz, the Cairns Taipans are also set to play NBA teams, the Toronto Raptors and the Washington Wizards, in similar matchups. These games provide a unique opportunity for NBL teams to test their skills against NBA competition.