NEW YORK (NBA) - International players have been spicing up the NBA for many years, including greats like Dirk Nowitzki, Manu Ginobili, Tony Parker and Pau Gasol, stars that are still in the league.
This season, a record 113 players from a record 41 countries and territories are on opening night rosters. Many of the NBA players feature for their national teams and competed as recently as this summer at FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournaments (OQTs) and at the Rio de Janeiro Games.
The previous records of international players was 101 and countries and territories represented (39), and they were set at the start of the 2014-15 and 2013-14 seasons, respectively.
NBA rosters at the start of the 2015-16 season featured 100 international players from 37 countries and territories.
On the opening night rosters in 2016-17, the European flavor is especially strong with a record 61 players. For the third straight year, all 30 teams will have at least one international player.
Canada have the most international players in the league for a third straight year with 11 while France (10) are second and Brazil (nine) are third. Australia will have a eight players, several of them members of the Boomers squad that finished fourth in Rio.
Croatia will also have a record-tying five NBA players, including Dario Saric, who is set to get big minutes with Philadelphia. Saric was the Most Valuable Player of the 2016 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Turin and also competed at the Rio Games.