• Sacramento is the only team in the NBA with an Indian-born majority owner in Vivek Ranadivé.
  • Bollywood themed night to be held during the game against the Los Angeles Lakers on 7th January 2016 (8th January morning in India).
  • This will be the third consecutive season that the Kings will be hosting a Bollywood themed night, after its previous two editions in front of sell-out crowds.
  • The night will include India-inspired fabrics and decor, cuisine, Bollywood-themed fan giveaways for those in attendance, and performances from leading Indian-American entertainers and celebrities.
  • This year’s Bollywood night coincides with the final scheduled game in Sacramento for NBA legend Kobe Bryant, who is due to retire at this end of this season.
File Photo: Sacramento's Sleep Train Arena decked up with colourful fabric sheets in anticipation of Bollywood Night. Image credit: NBAE/Getty Images/Rocky Widner. Courtesy: Sacramento Kings Organisation.

File Photo: Sacramento’s Sleep Train Arena decked up with colourful fabric sheets in anticipation of Bollywood Night. Image credit: NBAE/Getty Images/Rocky Widner. Courtesy: Sacramento Kings Organisation.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Sacramento Kings will host the Los Angeles Lakers for their third annual Bollywood Night, celebrating popular Indian culture and cinema. A night dedicated to the Indian-American community is especially significant for the Kings, as it was in May 2013 that a possible relocation to another city was prevented thanks to the acquisition of the team by a new group of owners led by Mumbai-born tech entrepreneur, Vivek Ranadivé.

“I’m proud to welcome fans from all over the world to participate and celebrate Indian culture and traditions,” said Kings Owner and Chairman Vivek Ranadivé. “The Kings continue to take steps to build basketball as the premier global sport of the 21st century by connecting with not only fans in India, but from all over the globe. Here at home, we encourage and challenge the loudest fans in the NBA to experience a new culture, and welcome them with open arms.”

Driven by Owner and Chairman Vivek Ranadivé, the first Indian-born owner in NBA history, the Kings have implemented a NBA 3.0 philosophy to make basketball the premier sport of the 21st century by focusing on cutting edge technology to enhance the fan experience, acting as a positive agent of change in the community and expanding the team’s global brand. Bollywood Night and the celebration of Indian culture is among many franchise outreach initiatives led by the Kings that embody this vision.

Tapping into the global appeal of Bollywood, on the décor and merchandising front, the night will witness colourful fabric sheets hung from the catwalks over the bowl, rally towels on seats for all fans, the choicest Indian cuisine, Bollywood scarves and t-shirts in the team store and warmup shirts for Kings’ players.

SACRAMENTO, CA - APRIL 2: Ben McLemore #16 of the Sacramento Kings warms up before a game against the Los Angeles Lakers at Sleep Train Arena on April 2, 2014 in Sacramento, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2014 NBAE (Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images)

File Photo: Guard Ben McLemore warming up as KINGS t-shirts in Hindi can be seen in the background, ready to be given away to fans. Image credit: NBAE/Getty Images/Rocky Widner. Courtesy: Sacramento Kings Organisation.

On the entertainment side, the first Miss America of Indian-descent, Nina Davuluri will join the Sacramento Kings Dancers for a special Bollywood-themed dance routine. The starting line-ups for the Kings and the Lakers will be introduced by a special guest announcer in Hindi. There will be a special halftime performance from Indian-American artist, Anjali World.

Other planned pregame and in-game events include Punjabi sword fighting, dance performances by the California-based Ankhiley Gabroo dance group, player introductions in Hindi and coordinated pyrotechnics. Sacramento native and artist, Pam Shankar, of Indo-Fijian descent, will be singing the national anthem.

The game itself holds much anticipation. The game will be Five-time NBA Champion Kobe Bryant’s final game in Sacramento, having announced his decision to retire at the end of this season.

*Tip off time: Friday, January 8th at 9:00 am [Indian Standard Time]; Thursday, January 7th at 7:30pm [Pacific Standard Time]

 *Live Broadcast in India on Sony Six and Sony Six HD.

 *Follow us on Instagram (@ekalavyas) for real time courtside updates by hardcore Kings fan Rachel Venkatraman!

About the Sacramento Kings & Vivek Ranadivé

In May 2013, Vivek Ranadivé led a dynamic and diverse ownership group comprised of leaders in technology, business, sports, marketing and real estate to purchase the Sacramento Kings. Under the new ownership, the Kings have implemented a forward-looking “NBA 3.0” philosophy focused on making the Kings the premier sports franchise of the 21st century. NBA 3.0 is driven by utilizing cutting-edge technology to enhance the fan experience, acting as a positive agent of change in the community, and expanding the team’s and the region’s global brand. For more information, please visit www.Kings.com.

About the National Basketball Association (NBA)

The NBA is a global sports and media business built around three professional sports leagues: the National Basketball Association, the Women’s National Basketball Association, and the NBA Development League.  The league has established a major international presence with games and programming in 215 countries and territories in 49 languages, and NBA merchandise for sale in more than 125,000 stores in 100 countries on 6 continents.  NBA rosters at the start of the 2015-16 season featured 100 international players from 37 countries and territories.  NBA Digital’s assets include NBA.com and NBA Mobile, which achieved record traffic during the 2014-15 season, as well as NBA TV.  The NBA has created one of the largest social media communities in the world, with more than 915 million likes and followers globally across all league, team, and player platforms.  Through NBA Cares, the league addresses important social issues by working with internationally recognized youth-serving organizations that support education, youth and family development, and health-related causes.

Gopalakrishnan R
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