The Denver Nuggets will meet the Italian League champions and
HOUSTON (AP) _ The Denver Nuggets will meet the Italian League champions and two other foreign teams on Oct. 20-22 at Rome in the third annual McDonalds Open basketball tournament, NBA commissioner David Stern said Saturday.
Stern, at a press conference on All-Star Saturday with Boris Stankovic, secretary general of FIBA, basketball’s international governing body, said the other teams in the event will be chosen after various tournaments later this year.
Stankovic also predicted that the FIBA congress will open the Olympics to professionals, including the NBA, when it meets in Munich, West Germany, on April 7.
″I firmly believe that Congress will vote for the new eligibility rules,″ Stankovic said. ″The trend in world sport is to have the best athletes at the Olympics. Basketball people around the world are changing their mind on this issue.″
Stern said no discussions have been held with amateur basketball officials in the United States concerning how an Olympic team would be chosen if the NBA is allowed to participate.
″If it happens, the logistics will be difficult and the discussions will be long and hard, but like everything else, it will be worked out,″ Stern said.
Denver will be the third NBA team to participate in the McDonalds Open tournament. The Milwaukee Bucks won the tournament at home in 1987 and the Boston Celtics won at Madrid, Spain, last year.
Stern made two other announcements at the press conference.
He said the NBA board of governors will consider a proposal in April that the 24-second shot clock not be reset to five seconds when the ball goes out of bounds with less than five seconds remaining. Stern said the proposal, which would conform to international rules, was made it unnecessarily punishes a defense that has worked hard to force the offense into a difficult situation.
Stern also said that, starting this month, the Soviet Union will telecast, with sponsors, two NBA games a month. The games, which will be edited down to one hour on tape, will be sponsored by Coca-Cola and MasterCard.