Mexico City, Mexico (4E Sports) – The San Antonio Spurs game against the Minnesota Timberwolves slated at Mexico City Arena has been postponed after a generator malfunction filled the venue with too much smoke.
The venue, which holds 22,300, was approaching a sell-out when smoke began billowing into the arena bowl through a duct in the ceiling after 7 p.m., about an hour and a half before tipoff.
By 7:30, visibility inside the arena was down to nil and Spurs officials expressed health concerns about the prospect of playing in smoky conditions in an arena at such a high altitude.
The teams’ buses left the arena for the Benito Juarez International Airport anhour later.
The game will be played in Minneapolis for a later date.
It was slated to be just the second regular-season game in NBA history to be played on Mexican soil and the first for the Spurs outside the U.S. or Canada.
San Antonio mayor Julián Castro, who has made relations with Mexico a focus of his administration, was on hand to commemorate the history-making occasion.
“Big disappointment for the sellout crowd at Mexico City Arena,” Castro tweeted. “Saw tons of @spurs jerseys. #GoSpursGo.”