China Shanghai Sport

L’impact de la NBA en Chine


Parmi les 4 grandes ligues américaines, la NBA est très certainement celle qui a le plus d’exposition et de rayonnement à l’international. Cela s’exprime directement au sein de la ligue, avec des joueurs de toutes nationalités. Cela s’exprime également en dehors, que ce soit en Europe ou en Asie. Mais en ce qui concerne ses investissements hors de ses terres, la NBA a bien compromis quelle était sa terre promise. Celle où elle doit axer ses investissements et y rendre la ligue pérenne : la NBA en Chine.


Une trajectoire exponentielle depuis les années 80


L’histoire de la NBA en Chine commence dans les années 1980, à l’époque de la rivalité Lakers – Celtics. Le commissionnaire de l’époque, David Stern, fit alors le déplacement pour rencontrer les dirigeants de la chaîne étatique CCTV pour les convaincre de diffuser les matchs. Dire que cette stratégie fut une réussite serait un euphémisme. En effet, selon Derek Chang, CEO de la NBA en Chine, 640 millions de chinois ont consulté des contenus relatifs à la ligue en 2017 – 2018. Ce chiffre ahurissant représente un peu moins de la moitié de la population chinoise.


Un autre élément de taille a contribué à la popularité de la NBA dans le pays. Cet élément, c’est le géant Yao Ming. À son arrivée en tant que 1er choix de la draft en 2002, beaucoup doutaient de sa capacité à s’imposer. Mais Yao décida de leur prouver le contraire. Malgré de nombreuses blessures, il termina sa carrière en étant 8 fois All-Star et 3 fois All-NBA. Même le grand Shaquille O’Neal qui s’était donné pour mission d’humilier le rookie lors de leur première rencontre s’y cassa les dents. Il exprima plus tard son respect. Aujourd’hui intronisé au Hall of Fame, Ming est un ambassadeur important pour la ligue en Chine.


Les actions concrètes sur place


En vivant à Shanghai, on peut aisément ressentir cette ferveur pour le basketball au quotidien. Les meilleures actions des matchs de la veille sont diffusées sur les écrans des bus. Il suffit aussi de rentrer dans un centre commercial. On peut croiser successivement plusieurs boutiques NBA ainsi que des boutiques de la marque chinoise Li-Ning à l’effigie de Dwyane Wade. Le jeune retraité a en effet signé en 2012 un contrat avec la marque chinoise et prolongé celui-ci en 2018 à vie. D’autres joueurs majeurs ont depuis signé en Chine, dont CJ McCollum chez Li-Ning, Klay Thompson chez Anta, ou Tony Parker chez Peak.


Mais la NBA est très loin de se satisfaire de ces résultats déjà excellents. Derek Chang estime qu’il y a 1,3 milliards d’individus et que cela devrait être la cible à atteindre. Pour augmenter son audience, la ligue va continuer à organiser comme chaque année depuis 2004 les China Games. Cette année, ils verront les Lakers de Lebron James et les Nets de D’Angelo Russell s’affronter à 2 reprises. La première rencontre aura lieu le 10 octobre à Shanghai et la seconde le 12 octobre à Shenzhen. La NBA va aussi continuer à multiplier les partenariats avec les géants du digital chinois. Déjà partenaire de Tencent depuis 2015, la ligue commence à travailler avec China Mobile, Bytedance ainsi qu’Alibaba.

China Chinese Gaming Shanghai Sport

The arcades craze in Shanghai

Even though you are a young adult or a grown man, we all have a kid we once were inside of us and enjoy childish activities. In that sense, Shanghai is an awesome place to reveal the kid inside of you. In fact, there are a great number of arcades places and it is also quite fascinating to understand the cultural difference between Chinese millennials and foreigners.


To do so, we will focus on 2 places that each to their own have a lot of interest and if you haven’t been, you should definitely go.


Cages sports bar: a foreigner’s hub


Perfectly located between JingAn and West Nanjing Road, the Cages sports bar is very different from the arcades. In fact, its first purpose is to be a bar. But it actually isn’t a regular bar, it is a sports bar. The venue has baseball batting areas with balls thrown at a speed over 110 miles per hour that are one of the main attractions. It also has an indoor five a side football field that also hosts dodgeball games. If you’re more into shooting hoops, there are a lot of basketball rims with different ranges, from Steph Curry to Andre Drummond. Even though the food and drinks are a bit pricey, it is definitely a place to check if you’re a foreigner in Shanghai.


But enough with this place, where people are not coming for the arcades parts. Let’s get to the main topic of this article, the real arcades.


Hong Kong mall arcades: a playful paradise under People’s Square



From the outside, don’t search for a fancy building that you would expect for a mall. It’s downstairs that you need to check and when you find the escalators of one the entrances, you have found it. Well, not exactly yet, you have found the entrance of the mall. But you should just follow the dance music sounds and once you see the entrance with Chinese teenagers dancing, here you are.


First of all, my advice would be to avoid weekend days and rather go during weekdays to have access to the machines. The weekend, it’s overcrowded and the noises of the machines can be quite disturbing. After the first dance machines, you enter through the cherry on top of the cake: the « teddy bear » catchers. Chinese people are mad in love with these and seeing one with a bag full of « teddy bears ». Except that there are not only teddy bears, but you can also win all your favorite childhood animated movies idols.



Then you arrive into the more adult part, with the guns and the cars. The most interesting machine in the whole arcade is the VR 4DX driving where you get to drive a racing car on a moving seat with windblown at you. There a lot of others driving and shootings machines. The basketball machines are also favored by Chinese consumers, with some being incredibly skilled. Then, in the last part, there are some odd machines where you have to tap on with your hands and some more dancing machines.


Overall, it is a great experience and it is interesting to see how the Chinese are entertained compared to foreigners. I definitely recommend the arcades to try and enjoy it, and the Cages bar for a drink with cool sports facilities.

China Chinese General

China : folie des grandeurs

The growth of China until today to make it the 2nd biggest economic powerhouse on the planet has been huge. But for a long time, people still had and some people still have the image of « the factory of the world ». But the reality is now very different, and to change that image, China builds symbols of this power for the world to see.


One of the first representatives of this new image was the Oriental Pearl Tower in Shanghai. But since then, the country wanted and still wants way bigger, the biggest in the world. So here are some of the biggest buildings of its kind that are located in China.




Completely finished in 2012 after many years of construction, the 3 Gorges dam is the biggest hydroelectric station in the world. Located in the Hubei province on the Yangzi Jiang river, the construction is 2335 meters long, 185 meters high and 115 meters large at its base. The dam produces more electricity than all the French dams. It has a system of stairs to get boats from one side to the other, as well as a system of an elevator for boats who need to go faster. Fun fact, when the last part was installed, it slowed – unsignificantly – the rotation speed of the earth.




Opened in 2016, the Hong Kong – Zhuhai – Macau sea bridge is the longest sea bridge in the world. The bridge is a part of the greater bay area around the 4 cities of Hong Kong, Macau, Shenzhen, and Guangzhou, that is home to more than 65 million people. It cuts the travel time from Hong Kong to Zhuhai to only 30 minutes. It is 55 kilometers long, has been designed to resist earthquakes up to magnitude 8, super typhoons and containers carriers collision. The steel of the equivalent of 60 Eiffel Towers was used to complete this amazing construction.





The FAST (Five hundred meters Aperture Spherical Telescope) built in Guizhou province and finished in 2016 is the largest radio telescope in the world by far. It is located in a remote location far from human life to avoid radio frequencies and its size is astonishing as it is around the equivalent of 30 football fields. There are a lot of high expectations around it. In fact, it has the potential to search for space to discover new planets and eventual extraterrestrial life. The only challenge that China is facing with this one is that there are only 40 people on the planet that are able to supervise the use of this equipment.




The New Century Global Center was opened in 2013 in Chengdu, Sichuan and the numbers related to this building are huge. The building is 100 meters high, 500 meters long and 400 meters large, and has a floor area of no less than 1 700 000 meters square. To put this number in perspective, the building is only 300 000 meters square shy of the size of Monaco ( 2 million square meters). It is home to hotels, work offices, cinemas, many shops, and a water park. It smashed the previous record held by a Dubai mall as it is twice the size.




We spoke about the largest building in the world with the New Century Global Center. Venetian Macau is also in the top 10 and is none other than the biggest casino in the world. The facility has 3 000 hotel rooms, 110 000 square meters of reception spaces, 51 000 square meters of casino including 3 400 slot machines and around 800 tables. The complex also includes the 15 000 seats Cotai Arena hosting many events such as sports, concerts, and shows.


I have personally seen some of these buildings such as the Hong Kong – Zhuhai – Macau bridge and the New Century Global Center. I also had the chance to enter inside the Venetian in Macau and it is really impressive. These constructions really showcase the economic power of China today. What will be the next China astonishing constructions?

China Sport

Rugby in China : Overview of the future

Do you know in which country is located the biggest rugby fanbase in the world? Your guess would probably be one of the biggest nations such as France, or maybe Australia. And you would be wrong, it is China and the USA, followed by India and then France.


Where does China stand in the continental development?


With 33 million fans in each of these countries, they are tied for the number 1 spot. The scale is different since China has a huge population and 33 million out of 1,4 billion is not as impressive as the US numbers. But the difference here is that the USA Eagles are already a pretty good team, qualified for the rugby world cup, and really improving towards the elite of rugby. For China, let’s have an overview and see where is Chinese rugby in its development, and see the huge potential for the sport to develop there.


Let’s start by saying that China and Asia, in general, is one the very fastest developing fanbases around the world. Japan is still the leader, thanks to their great 2015  World Cup campaign in which they beat the Springboks and the fact that they host the World Cup this year and also Hong Kong who almost qualified for the next World Cup. China is not yet playing anywhere near this level, the men’s team is, in fact, ranked 87 on World rugby’s ranking and the women team is performing better as they are ranked 25.


But that leaves a lot of room for improvement and the least to say is that some persons already understand the potential for rugby in China. Among these persons, there is Alisports and World Rugby who signed a deal in 2016 to invest 100 million US dollars into Chinese rugby with the goal to develop 1 million new players in the country within 10 years.

A bright future ahead

Some of this money is also supposed to be invested to introduce the game into universities, to recruit around 30 000 coaches who know the game well and to launch a nationwide advertising campaign with the help of the digital tools of Alibaba. For the moment, the project has been put on hold and might never be completed but this shows that the interest is here and a different project will be done if this one fails to launch. It’s only a matter of time until it gets all over China.


With the 2019 World Cup is surely going to raise interest in China even though it is being held in Japan. The trophy has been taken on tours around the whole continent, including China. It was taken in different places around the mainland such as Beijing, the Great Wall of China, and different school and universities to promote the sport. Brett Gosper, CEO of World Rugby, said that having the Webb-Ellis cup on the Great Wall is a fantastic symbol. Independently from Alisports, World Rugby is investing on its own to develop the sport in Asia, with the program Impact Beyond 2019, a continent-wide project to attract from 500 000 to 1 million new players.


All these elements combined show that the question with rugby in China is not that is rugby is ever going to be popular there, but when. Their humongous population combined with their investment mentality are huge assets, and things should happen very soon to welcome a new powerhouse rugby nation to challenge the mighty New Zealand All Blacks and eventually win a world cup.