This year marks the debut of what the NBA is calling the “In-Season Tournament.” Okay, but what exactly does it entail? Well, it is based on the in-season soccer tournaments played across Europe where clubs compete in group stages for a gold cup. Commissioner Adam Silver sees it as a way to gain more worldwide exposure for the league — and to earn more money from television rights — from the beginning of November through the first week of December.
Playing for the inaugural NBA Cup, the NBA split its 30 franchises into six groups of five teams. The in-season tournament starts on November 3 with four group stage games (round-robin play), then moves on to the knockout rounds (single elimination) on December 4. The semifinals and championship games will be played in Las Vegas from December 7-9.
The Sixers got lumped into Group A and they will travel to Detroit to face the Pistons on November 10 at 7 p.m. before hosting the Indiana Pacers on November 14 at 7 p.m. Here is the rest of their schedule:
Players will be incentivized for performance, too. Each member on the winning team will receive $500,000 and the runners-up will get $200,000 in addition to bragging rights — and a shiny NBA Cup trophy. Nothing that happens during the in-season tournament will impact postseason positioning or the regular-season standings.
“This is a concept that has been rumbling around the league office for about 15 years,” Silver told The Associated Press in July. “It’s not a new concept in sports. For those that follow particularly international soccer, it’s a long tradition of having in-season tournaments … so we thought, what a perfect opportunity for a global league like the NBA and it’s a perfect fit for our game.”