Lakers, Knicks, Timberwolves to take preseason tour in Europe

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Three NBA teams, Lakers, Knicks and Timberwolves, with foreign-born stars are set to play preseason games in Europe, NBA commissioner David Stern confirmed on Tuesday.

The Los Angeles Lakers, New York Knicks and Minnesota Timberwolves will play two games each in the fifth installment of the NBA's preseason European Tour.

The 2009 champion Lakers will face the Timberwolves at the O2 Arena in London on Oct. 4 and then play Barcelona in Spain three days later.

The Knicks will take on Armani Jeans Milano in Milan, Italy, on Oct. 3 and then play the Timberwolves three days later in Paris at the Bercy Arena.

Lakers center Pau Gasol was born in Barcelona and played for the team before moving to the NBA in 2001.

For the Knicks, there are two reasons to play in Milan. Knicks forward Danilo Gallinari is a Milan native and played in the Italian city before signing with New York, and Knicks coach Mike D 'Antoni played and coached there.

Although this is fifth straight year the NBA is playing preseason games in Europe, the British capital will be hosting a game for the fourth year in a row.

Last season, British standout Luol Deng and the Chicago Bulls took the court at the O2.

Stern has been saying for years that he expects to play a regular-season game in London before the 2012 Olympics, and he reiterated Tuesday that he still plans to make it happen.

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