By the time he eventually steps down next February, David Stern will have seen the NBA make huge strides in globalization and in overseas popularity over the course of his 30-year tenure. However, it's extremely unlikely that Stern will be bringing an NBA franchise to Europe before he retires. Nonetheless, appearing on ESPN Radio's SVP & Russillo, the longtime commish expressed some degree of certainty that the Association would expand overseas within the next couple decades.
"I think so," Stern said when asked if he sees a team in Europe at some point (link via Royce Young of CBSSports.com). "I think multiple NBA international teams. Twenty years from now? For sure. In Europe. No place else. In other places I think you'll see the NBA name on leagues and other places with marketing and basketball support, but not part of the NBA as we now know it."
Stern's comments echo ones he's made before — back in October, he suggested that expansion overseas currently wasn't viable, and that it didn't make sense to have a single team in Europe. However, he noted that if NBA-caliber arenas were to be constructed in various European countries, the resources eventually could be in place to support multiple clubs overseas.
While we're likely still a long way from hearing any serious discussions about European expansion, cities like London, Berlin, and Paris could be candidates to eventually have NBA franchises.