NEW YORK, JUNE 2 -- This October, the NBA will stage preseason games in Mexico City (Mexico), San Juan (Puerto Rico), Paris (France) and Barcelona (Spain), it was announced by NBA Commissioner David Stern.

The league previously announced that it will play two regular season games in Saitama (Japan).

“We are pleased to resume our schedule of international games with the full slate we have announced for Asia, Europe, and Latin American,” said NBA Commissioner David Stern. “Although our games are available on television in over 200 countries there is nothing quite like showcasing our stars during the live game experience to cement our relationship with the growing base of international NBA fans.”

The international schedule begins with NBA Mexico 2003, a preseason game between the Dallas Mavericks and the Utah Jazz, at the Palacio de los Deportes in Mexico City, Mexico on October 5. It will mark a return home for Mexico’s native son, Eduardo Najera, as a member of the Dallas Mavericks. Since 1992, the NBA has staged 15 games in Mexico at the site of the ’68 Olympic Games, the Palacio de los Deportes

The schedule continues on to San Juan, Puerto Rico with NBA Puerto Rico 2003, a preseason game between the Philadelphia 76ers and the Miami Heat, on October 7. This will mark the fourth time since 1993 that the NBA has played an exhibition game in Puerto Rico.

As part of the NBA Europe Games 2003, there will be a preseason game between the San Antonio Spurs and the Memphis Grizzlies at Bercy Arena in Paris, France on October 8. San Antonio Spurs point guard Tony Parker will return home to his native France for the first time with his NBA team. The NBA’s last visit to Paris was in 1997, when the Chicago Bulls participated in the McDonald’s Championship.

The Memphis Grizzlies will go on to play an exhibition game against 2003 Euroleague Champions FC Barcelona at Palau Sant Jordi in Barcelona, Spain on October 10. The game will feature Memphis Grizzlies star forward Pau Gasol, a native of Barcelona, Spain, playing against his former team. The NBA’s last game in the Barcelona area was in 1994, when the Golden State Warriors defeated Joventut Badalona 122-104 at the Olmpico Pavello de Badalona in Badalona, Spain.

The Los Angeles Clippers and the Seattle SuperSonics will open their 2003-04 NBA regular season schedules with two games at Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan on Thursday, October 30 and Saturday, November 1. For the first time in NBA Japan Games history, the NBA will host the event at the Saitama Super Arena, the venue for the 2006 FIBA World Basketball Championship for Men. This will be the second visit to Japan for each team.

The rest of the 2003-04 NBA preseason and regular season schedules will be announced later this Summer.

Since its founding in 1946, the NBA has truly 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, and 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 reaching a global audience on a daily basis. Among English-Language sports league Web sites, NBA.com draws the greatest number of users outside the United States with more than 40% of traffic to the site coming from international locations.

The NBA is a recognized leader in global sports marketing with 13 offices around the world. The league has 67 international players from 35 countries and territories on team rosters for the 2002-03 NBA season, resulting in global media coverage and increasing fan interest worldwide. The NBA works with its strong roster of global marketing partners to create integrated marketing platforms for many of the world’s most recognizable brands. For more information on the NBA, visit www.NBA.com.