In a short video posted Tuesday by Barclays Center TV, Irina Pavlova, president of ONEXIM Sports and Entertainment, talked to Alyonka Larionov, host of Barclays Center TV, about why the Nets made a big deal of the "Evening of Russian Culture" Sunday.
It wasn't all about Brighton Beach. And it wasn't all about culture either. It's about bringing the Nets to a global audience ... starting with Russia, where the game could be seen live across the world's largest country.
"I think we live in a global world," Pavlova told Larionov. "With inter-connectivity and social media and the Internet, you can't really be segregated in one area of the world just as you can't be in one area of the Internet. And I think we have this special connection because of Mr. Prokhorov's ownership. We have a special connection to Russia and we love to play it up."
"It's an opportunity to re-connect with our Russian-speaking fans here, reach out to our fans in Russia back home and also introduce Russian culture to people who might not be familiar with it yet."
Both women are very familiar with Russian culture. The two were born in Moscow, but spent their formative years in the United States, Pavlova, the daughter of a Soviet diplomat stationed in Washington; Larionov, the daughter of a Hockey Hall of Famer who played mainly for Detroit.
Prokhorov has long talked about making the Nets a global team and beyond the Russian Culture, the night also provided the Nets with another opportunity to move in that direction. The team has quietly upgraded their Nets Russia website with far more detailed Russian language offerings than in the past. If a Russian fan is interested in the Nets signing Damion James to a 10-day contract, it's there. (They should probably update this page, however.)
It doesn't end there either. The Nets' mascot, the BrooklyKnight and the Brooklynettes will travel to Istanbul to perform at the Turkish Basketball League All-Star Game Sunday. The game is at the Fenerbahce arena. Bojan Bogdanovic, the Nets' second round pick in 2011, is expected to play in the game.
- Brooklyn Nets Celebrate Russian Culture Night (Video) - Barclays Center TV
- Nets players get ready for an Evening of Russian Culture at Russian Samovar (Video) - Brooklyn Nets