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For Brooklyn Nets, it's on to China ... and two games with the Sacramento Kings

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Brooklyn Nets

The Nets boarded a charter jet Wednesday afternoon for a 14-and-a-half hour flight to Shanghai, the first stop on their two-city trip to China.  They will play the Kings in Shanghai at 1 a.m. ET Sunday, then again a week from Wednesday in Beijing.  That game starts at 7:30 a.m. Both games will be televised on NBA TV.  YES is not traveling with the team. Nor are any of the team's beat writers.

While ownership and management are pleased with the idea of expanding the team's global reach, the Nets players sound less enthused, even Kevin Garnett, who along with LeBron James is the most popular NBA player in China and has a shoe deal with Anta, a Chinese footwear company.

"The Brooklyn Nets brand resonates globally and playing in China gives us a significant opportunity to expand our international appeal," said Brett Yormark. "In addition to preparing our players for the upcoming season, we are planning to utilize this trip to meet Chinese business leaders, engage the local community, and to build a lasting presence."

But when asked if he was "excited" about going there to play a pair of preseason games this week, Garnett replied with a smile, "I don’t want to answer that question."   Garnett later said: "It’s great to travel abroad and being with the guys is a great thing."

The trip is filled with events, both business and basketball.

The first Nets event will be a breakfast panel co-hosted with the Sacramento Kings on Oct. 10. It will be attended by members of the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai (AmCham) to discuss the game of business on and off the court, including similarities in running a business and a basketball organization.  Brett Yormark and Billy King, and Kings President Chris Granger and GM Pete D’Alessandro will participate.

The players will dedicate two new or refurbished playgrounds. In Beijing, Brook Lopez along with 50 children from a local school and executives from adidas and the NBA will dedicate a black-and-white indoor court that will feature Nets branding.  The team will also hold a clinic for 45 hearing-impaired children in the Chinese capital.

The Nets next game after their Chinese trip is a home game vs. the Celtics on October 19 at 7:30. The Nets will play three games in four days, then have a week off before Opening Night in Boston on October 29.