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Russian team to play NBA squads in October

The SportsXchange

CSKA Moscow will play the San Antonio Spurs and Minnesota Timberwolves as part of the Euroleague American Tour 2013 in October.

Euroleague Basketball and the NBA jointly announced Monday that the Russian championship team will play the Timberwolves on Oct. 7.

The Timberwolves' roster includes former CSKA star and Euroleague MVP Andrei Kirilenko, former CSKA player Alexey Shved, and former Euroleague champions Nikola Pekovic and Ricky Rubio.

CSKA will also visit the San Antonio Spurs on Oct. 9. The Spurs have six Eurorleague alumni, including Euroleague champion Manu Ginobili and three-time All-Euroleague selection Tiago Splitter.

"We are very proud to announce the Euroleague American Tour after three successful editions in 2009, 2010 and 2012," said Roser Queralto, Euroleague Basketball Chief Business Development Officer, in a statement. "We consider that these games reflect the global reach of basketball and bring fans the opportunity to witness the best teams in the world playing against each other. We would like to thank CSKA Moscow for its participation and the NBA for a fruitful collaboration we have been developing in recent years."

In 2008, CSKA Moscow played against the Orlando Magic and the Toronto Raptors. In 2010, it took on the Miami Heat, Oklahoma City Thunder and the Cleveland Cavaliers. Moscow's win over the Cavaliers was the first time a European team beat an NBA team in the U.S.

The NBA and Euroleague Basketball will play two exhibition games in Europe as part of NBA Global Games. It includes eight NBA teams playing in eight cities in six countries this October.

The Thunder open the schedule in Istanbul, Turkey on Oct. 5 against the five-time Turkish champion Fenerbahce Ulker Istanbul. The Philadelphia 76ers face Uxue Bilbao Basket Oct. 6. The Thunder and 76ers will then play each other Oct. 8 for the league's first game in Manchester, England.

"The NBA and Euroleague Basketball teams have a long history of competition in both Europe and the United States that stretches back more than three decades," said Ben Morel, NBA Senior Vice President, Europe, in a statement. "These games featuring the Minnesota Timberwolves, San Antonio Spurs, and CSKA Moscow build on our previously announced NBA Global Games contests in Istanbul and Bilbao and further our partnership with Euroleague Basketball to grow the sport of basketball globally."
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