DENVER, Apr. 8, 2003 – Denver Nuggets forward-center Nene Hilario, a native of Brazil, will be featured in a new public service announcement that debuts around the world in April to help raise awareness about HIV/AIDS prevention and education, it was announced today by the National Basketball Association. Produced by NBA Entertainment in conjunction with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the 30-second PSA will be broadcast around the world through NBA games and programming. NBA Entertainment programming is distributed globally to 212 countries in 42 different languages via 148 broadcasters, reaching more than 750 million households.

Hilario, who is currently averaging 10.5 points, 6.2 rebounds and 1.9 assists in his rookie season with the Nuggets, was selected as the seventh overall pick in the first round by the New York Knicks at the 2002 NBA Draft and later traded to the Nuggets. At the recent NBA All-Star Weekend, he was one of six international players in the 2003 got milk? Rookie Challenge.


Nene Hilario giving his HIV/AIDS prevention and education message.
NBAE/Getty Images
Video: Portuguese | Spanish
The television spot features Hilario encouraging people to participate in the prevention of HIV and AIDS and to educate themselves and others about the disease. Speaking in his native Portuguese and Spanish, Hilario says, “In life – as in basketball—you need to make smart choices. Using condoms and not sharing needles are intelligent decisions that can help you live a longer, healthier life.”

“Through education you can learn more about the prevention of HIV and AIDS…and together we can help stop the spread of the disease,” adds Hilario.

“This is an example of how the NBA’s players, coaches and teams can work to make a difference and be a positive catalyst for change,” said Mike Bantom, NBA Senior Vice President of Player and Basketball Development. The NBA currently features 65 international players from 34 different countries on team rosters. Hilario’s PSA is the latest featuring international players. Other international players, who have participated in the NBA’s series of global PSAs, include: Felipe Lopez of the Minnesota Timberwolves, Dikembe Mutombo of the New Jersey Nets, Peja Stojakovic of the Sacramento Kings and Eduardo Najera of the Dallas Mavericks. The players chose to address a problematic issue of personal interest and relevance to their native countries.

“We need more role models, like Nene Hilario and the other NBA players and athletes that have participated in UNODC’s Sports against Drugs campaign, who love sports and want to communicate the dangers of abusing drugs to young people around the world,” said Antonio Maria Costa, Executive Director of UNODC.

The UN Office on Drugs and Crime's Sports against Drugs campaign uses sport to provide youth a positive life choice and to promote a healthy lifestyle free from drugs. UNODC spreads its message through public awareness campaigns, partnerships with star athletes and local sports activities.

The public service outreach is part of the NBA’s continued commitment to reach out to fans around the world. Through PSAs and programs such as Read to Achieve, the NBA encourages community involvement and responsibility. The NBA also is a member of the Global Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS and NBA Commissioner David Stern serves on the corporate advisory board.

The NBA and its players recognize and embrace their responsibility as concerned citizens by supporting causes that help people achieve an improved quality of life. Special emphasis is placed on serving the needs and recognizing the accomplishments of young people. Efforts also focus on education, literacy, volunteerism and child abuse prevention.

Since its founding in 1946, the NBA has become a global phenomenon that transcends national boundaries. With 29 teams in the United States and Canada, NBA games and related programming are broadcast to 212 countries in 42 languages. The NBA is one of the largest suppliers of sports television and Internet programming in the world. Through NBA Entertainment, the league's award-winning production and programming division, the league produces NBA TV, a 24-hour television network, weekly television shows, and exclusive content for each of the NBA's team web sites, and the league's official sites, NBA.com, WNBA.com and NBDL.com. The league has also continued its partnerships with the leading Internet content and technology providers to bring the game experience even closer to its fans worldwide.