What to Know as Hawks, Magic meet in 2023 NBA Mexico City Game

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Atlanta — winners of four of its last five games — is making its first appearance in Mexico City. The Trae Young-led squad is trying to regain the pace they set a few years ago when they reached the conference finals. So far, so decent under Quin Snyder in his first full season as coach.

Snyder’s main task right now is giving Young some efficiency tips. The former All-Star guard is coming off a subpar season in that regard, and once again is struggling, shooting 33.6% overall and 27.3% on 3-pointers.

But there is better news: Jalen Johnson. His scoring and rebounding averages are up significantly, and he has surprised as the replacement for the departed John Collins. Also, Dejounte Murray looks frisky at both ends.

What they’re saying: “Basketball is a global game. To have a chance to play in Mexico where there is a passion for basketball and where there is a G League team, it’s an opportunity to continue to embrace the game worldwide.” — Hawks coach Quin Snyder

“I’ve been (to Mexico) to visit. I haven’t been to Mexico City, though, so that’s going to be a first. I’m looking forward to going over there (to) try to put on a show and win over there. From what I hear, it’s a lot of energy and excitement around (Mexico City) when it comes to basketball.” — Hawks guard Trae Young

The Magic: Orlando is no stranger to Mexico City and will technically be considered the home team. The Magic appear to be progressing and showing signs of staying afloat, especially if they continue to play defense. They rank No. 4 in defensive rating entering Thursday.

Reigning Kia Rookie of the Year Paolo Banchero has been turnover-plagued this season but still productive. He’s averaging 25.6 points, eight rebounds and seven assists in his last three games.

The logjam at guard eventually needs to be sorted out, probably at the trade deadline. Until then, Jalen Suggs, Cole Anthony, Markelle Fultz and Gary Harris will do for now. First-round pick Anthony Black, as a result, must wait his turn.

What they’re saying: “I think it’s so amazing for our league, for everyone involved in basketball — fans or parts of organizations. I think it’s so great that we continue to use basketball as a way to bring people together, to celebrate each other, to celebrate the beauty of the game.” — Magic coach Jamahl Mosley

“I think (the game) is growing and becoming a very global game. You see it in our players in the NBA and just how balanced it is. So, the chance to go over there and play in front of a different crowd and really spread the game and spread the joy is something we’re all excited about.” — Magic guard Jalen Suggs

How to watch: Fans in the U.S. can tune in on NBA TV at 9:30 p.m. ET. The game will air live in Mexico on ESPN, Star+ and Channel 9-TUDN at 8:30 p.m. ET. It is also available domestically and internationally on NBA League Pass via the NBA App. Fans can reach the game in more than 200 countries and territories on television, digital media and social media.

G League: The Mexico City Capitanes will host the Osceola Magic on Friday, Nov. 10 as part of the NBA G League’s Showcase Cup schedule.

Past Mexico City Games

Here is a complete list of regular-season NBA games played in Mexico City.

1997: Mavericks 108, Rockets 106
2014: Rockets 113, Timberwolves 101
2015: Celtics 114, Kings 97
2016: Mavericks 113, Suns 108
2017: Nets 100, Thunder 95
2017: Heat 101, Nets 89
2018: Magic 97, Bulls 91
2018: Magic 96, Jazz 89
2019: Spurs 121, Suns 119 (OT)
2019: Mavericks 122, Pistons 111
2022: Heat 111, Spurs 101

Source : NBA