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New York Knicks Hardaway Jr. pleased to be returning for another London NBA match

PUBLISHED: 08:00 17 October 2018

Tim Hardaway Jr. of the New York Knicks shoots the ball against the Washington Wizards during pre-season game (Pic: Ned Dishman)

Tim Hardaway Jr. of the New York Knicks shoots the ball against the Washington Wizards during pre-season game (Pic: Ned Dishman)

2018 NBAE

New York Knicks shooting guard Tim Hardaway Jr. is excited about returning to London to play in front of the British crowd when they play against Washington Wizards in the NBA London 2019 match.

Tim Hardaway Jr. of the New York Knicks handles the ball against the Washington Wizards during a pre-season game (Pic: Ned Dishman)Tim Hardaway Jr. of the New York Knicks handles the ball against the Washington Wizards during a pre-season game (Pic: Ned Dishman)

The 26-year-old California native is happy to get another chance to play in London when the Knicks played the Detroit Pistons in 2013.

“It’s exciting; they don’t get to see too much NBA basketball in the UK so it will be a great experience.

“I remember going to London in my second year in the league. The British crowd, they were amazing.

“Everybody in London treated us with love and respect and I was very happy to be a part of it.”

The former Atlanta Hawks player is expecting the O2 Arena to be crowd for the match and believes it will be exciting for London’s basketball fans.

“It’s going to be loud,” Hardaway Jr. said.

“There are going to be some guys that the crowd will know out there like John Wall and other All-Stars.

“It’s going to be exciting for the London crowd to see those guys up close and personal. It’s going to be a loud, exciting crowd.”

The former Michigan College man feels it is a highlight for most NBA stars to play in the London fixtures.

“A lot of these guys in the NBA have never been to London or let alone been outside of the country so it’s going to be an exciting and enjoyable experience for them.

“And a great way to experience a different culture and a different background.”

The 2014 NBA All-Rookie first team member also dubbed London as one of his favorite European cities alongside Berlin, Germany.

“Berlin is one of my favourite places to visit, I’ve been there a couple of times.

“I’ve been to London, multiple times as well. It’s amazing. I love the culture. It kind of reminds me of New York a little bit with the people and the culture.

“London is one of my favorite cities since I’ve been there many times.”

Hardaway Jr. is also urging UK fans to buy tickets for the match at the O2 Arena and described it as a once in a lifetime opportunity.

“The NBA London Game is a once in a lifetime opportunity if you’ve never seen an NBA basketball game before.

“Like I said, they don’t have that many chances or opportunities to see professional basketball players from the NBA in the UK. So it’s going to be exciting.

“It’s going to be a fun and enjoyable game and it’s going to be very, very competitive.”

Although, he does expect it to be a real tough challenge against the Washington Wizards.

“The key players for the Wizards are John Wall and Bradley Beal, they also have some great guys that they picked up in this off-season in Jeff Green and Austin Rivers.

“They have great, young talent in Kelly Oubre. They’re a fun and exciting team that can shoot the ball and drive to the basket. They’re all athletic. They play defense.

“I don’t really know a weakness on their squad except for if they don’t bring their energy but they’re going to bring it.

“The game in London is going to be exciting.”

Tickets for the NBA London Game 2019 will go on general sale Friday, Oct. 19 at 9 a.m. BST at www.axs.com/nbalondon. Fans can register their details at NBA.com/London to gain early access to a limited number of tickets via a presale to be held on Wednesday, Oct. 17 at 9 a.m. BST.

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