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Why are Warriors-Wizards playing preseason games in Japan?

Golden State and Washington play two exhibition games in Japan this preseason.

NBA Japan Games Team Practice
Bradley Beal of the Washington Wizards speaks at media interview during the NBA Japan Games Team Practice on September 29, 2022 in Tokyo, Japan.
Photo by Jun Sato/WireImage

The NBA Global Games initiative will continue in the 2022-23 preseason as the Golden State Warriors and Washington Wizards play in Saitama, Japan. There will actually be two games in Japan between these squads, with the first taking place September 30 and the second happening October 2.

These will be the 15th and 16th NBA games taking place in Japan as part of the league’s overall growth initiative. Japan isn’t the only international site this year, as games will be played in Paris and Mexico City during the year. The NBA Global Games last game to Japan in 2019 when the Toronto Raptors and Houston Rockets played two preseason contests in Saitama. The last regular season game to take place in Japan was a 2003 contest between the Los Angeles Clippers and Seattle SuperSonics.

This will be the first time both the Warriors and Wizards will be featured in Japan. The Wizards bring some hometown love with Rui Hachimura returning to his native country for these games.