The Suns hosted an NBA preseason game at Indian Wells Tennis Garden from '08-10, but there are "no plans" for a game this year, according to Patti Myers of the Palm Springs DESERT SUN. Indian Wells Tennis Garden COO Steve Simon said, “It's all about the right mix and the right schedule. It's a function of scheduling and finding two teams that want to play in a unique setting in open air.” Suns investor Richard Heckmann "had discussed it in March" with PM Sports CEO Charlie Pasarell and business partner Raymond Moore, as well as Oracle Founder & CEO and Indian Wells Tennis Garden Owner Larry Ellison, "to keep it on the table for the future." Myers writes the “overall preparation for a one-game event is difficult from an operations perspective -- from local ticket sales, travel, appearances, television, all the way down to shipping and assembling the floor on center court.” However, the Suns “praised the event” (Palm Springs DESERT SUN, 7/17).
FAR EAST MOVEMENT: In West Palm Beach, Ethan Skolnick wrote of the planned Heat-Clippers preseason games in China, "Sponsors and participants will expect to count plenty of cash afterward." The Heat have "actively sought business deals in the region, and last season signed an agreement with Tsingtaou beer." Heat F LeBron James, G Dwyane Wade and F Chris Bosh all played for the Gold Medal-winning USA Basketball team in the '08 Beijing Games, and James and Wade "in particular have strong followings" in China (PALMBEACHPOST.com, 7/16).