Having looked at both American Football and basketball’s plans to grow their markets beyond the U.S., my hunch is we should see an NFL team based overseas before an NBA franchise.
However, I would not be surprised if neither league actually moves a side to foreign soil, even though global expansion is viewed as essential to growing their respective businesses.
The view of the NFL as a global sport is accentuated during Super Bowl week. The clash between the Seattle Seahawks and the Denver Broncos is expected to attract more than 2013’s worldwide audience of 111.3 million viewers.
And with three regular-season games scheduled for London in 2014, the sport is giving the impression of an inexorable journey towards physical expansion beyond American shores.
With annual revenues of around $10 billion a year, the NFL is twice as lucrative as the NBA.
However, with both sports reaching financial saturation point Stateside, the exploration of international markets continues apace.
Speaking to CNN during his visit to London for the Brooklyn Nets versus the Atlanta Hawks in January, outgoing NBA commissioner David Stern said: "We're at 90% capacity. Over half of our games are sellouts ... but the world, and digital, are our oysters and we will absolutely see where that takes us."
In the past, Stern has been happy to talk about the possibility of an NBA franchise, or even a whole division of teams, based abroad.
It makes for a good headline but, when pushed, he admits they’re still a decade away from even discussing the prospect in a serious way.
"We’re going to have to wait until the game is more popular overseas," said Stern. "It's increased in its popularity but it's not where we want to get it. "
And that's before we even get to the logistical challenges.
An NBA team plays more than 80 regular-season games over seven months, compared to a 16-game four-month season in the NFL.
So no wonder Stern, half-jokingly, said, "If I were the NFL I would think about a team (based abroad) because you could play a game in London. You could have a team there. Those guys have it easy."
While it is more feasible for an NFL team, with only one game a week, to be seven hours away in London, it would be almost impossible for an NBA franchise in Europe to jet back and forth across the Atlantic several times a month.
One indication that the NBA's international games are more about raising awareness than testing whether or not to base a team abroad is their social media strategy.
Financial Times sports business correspondent Roger Blitz told me the NBA is already one up on the NFL in that sphere.
With modern technology, it's never been easier for fans across the world to stay in touch with their American sporting heroes, whether they play basketball or football.
Getting the occasional chance to see them play in person is a bonus but doesn't necessarily mean their favorite team is moving to a nearby city any time soon.