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NYC Duke Fan
08-24-2008, 05:34 PM
Instead of picking a Dream Team or Redeem Team or whatever to represent the US in men's basketball in the Olympics, what about having the team that wins the NBA title represent the US. If that team has a foreign player than another player could be substituted.

Think about it, the US did not blow out Spain with Pau Gasol, and the US having the best players in the world on their team, but the Celtics with Garnett, Pierce ,Allen and other players beat the Lakers with Gasol AND Kobe.

The team that wins the NBA title plays 82 games AS A TEAM.

I understand that it was only one game in the Olympics for a gold medal and it takes the best of 7 to win a title, but I think the proposal has merits.

Any comments

billybreen
08-24-2008, 05:39 PM
Instead of picking a Dream Team or Redeem Team or whatever to represent the US in men's basketball in the Olympics, what about having the team that wins the NBA title represent the US. If that team has a foreign player than another player could be substituted.

Think about it, the US did not blow out Spain with Pau Gasol, and the US having the best players in the world on their team, but the Celtics with Garnett, Pierce ,Allen and other players beat the Lakers with Gasol AND Kobe.

The team that wins the NBA title plays 82 games AS A TEAM.

I understand that it was only one game in the Olympics for a gold medal and it takes the best of 7 to win a title, but I think the proposal has merits.

Any comments

I've given that some thought over the last few years, but I think there are too many international players in key roles for that to work. Just look at the Spurs -- if they win the championship and you have to remove Oberto, Parker, and Ginobli, that is a very different team. Sure you can plug in different players, but by then you've already lost the motivation for using this approach -- keeping a successful team together.

Cali-Duke
08-24-2008, 05:45 PM
I've thought about this too, but I'm sure many GM's would argue that it isn't fair to send the champions to the Olympics since they lose their off season and run the risk of injuring themselves. This could hurt the team significantly for the next season, which, sadly, I'm sure is much more important to NBA GM's than the Olympics.

The Olympics is an honor that requires sacrifice. It isn't fair to force it on someone, even if it might be more logical.

hc5duke
08-24-2008, 05:47 PM
I've given that some thought over the last few years, but I think there are too many international players in key roles for that to work. Just look at the Spurs -- if they win the championship and you have to remove Oberto, Parker, and Ginobli, that is a very different team. Sure you can plug in different players, but by then you've already lost the motivation for using this approach -- keeping a successful team together.

Completely agree with this and I have nothing to add but I wanted to make a post saying so.

Ok, but seriously, the Spurs were exactly who I was going to use. Also, I think I'd much rather have the current Olympic team to represent the U.S. than the Celtics.

Edouble
08-24-2008, 06:10 PM
The system wouldn't work because at what point do you start replacing players? You can't tell me that it's wise to send the 12th guy on the Celtics roster (whoever that is) when LeBron James is available.

Plus, the motivation to win gold seems like it might be lowered when you've just won an NBA Title. Guys like Chris Paul and Chris Bosh haven't won NBA Titles or been to a Final Four, so you have to think they're hungrier. Hunger, as evidenced by this year's team, is a huge factor.

After one or two more Olympics, this proposed system will probably be laughable, with the number of impact foreign players coming into the league increasing every year.

CameronBornAndBred
08-24-2008, 06:16 PM
This quote comes from the article that Gotham Devil posted ("Everybody wants to talk about NBA players being arrogant, being selfish, being individuals," Bryant said after the gold-medal win. "But what you saw here was a team.") in another thread.

"Everybody wants to talk about NBA players being arrogant, being selfish, being individuals," Bryant said after the gold-medal win. "But what you saw here was a team."

I'm perfectly happy and comfortable with our team the way it is if they have that attitude. That will be Coach K's legacy to the Olympic team.

DevilCastDownfromDurham
08-24-2008, 06:34 PM
I've always been a fan of the idea of having a designated "US Olympic team" made up of non-college, non-NBA players. The team would play together all year with international rules and build the cohesive togetherness that no group of all-stars can have. In terms of players, it seems like there are a ton of great talents that just fit better in the international game than in the NBA. Guys like Trajan Langdon come through college, don't find a fit in the NBA, and then go overseas to great success. Why not keep the 15-20 best here in a year-round team, rather than asking NBA guys to sacrifice their health and risk major injury after a grueling season.

I've loved watching K and the best talent in the world over the last couple of weeks, but the toll it takes on players is just so major, even with no specific in-game injury. We may not win every year (OTOH we may if familiarity, chemistry, and "fit" with the international style provide enough of a boost), but I know I'd love to cheer that team on, especially if it can bring players like Trajan with college star power back to the big stage.

Just my 2 cents.

pfrduke
08-24-2008, 06:39 PM
Instead of picking a Dream Team or Redeem Team or whatever to represent the US in men's basketball in the Olympics, what about having the team that wins the NBA title represent the US. If that team has a foreign player than another player could be substituted.

Think about it, the US did not blow out Spain with Pau Gasol, and the US having the best players in the world on their team, but the Celtics with Garnett, Pierce ,Allen and other players beat the Lakers with Gasol AND Kobe.

The team that wins the NBA title plays 82 games AS A TEAM.

I understand that it was only one game in the Olympics for a gold medal and it takes the best of 7 to win a title, but I think the proposal has merits.

Any comments

Well, to start, you singled out the Gold medal game to say we didn't blow out Spain with Gasol. In prelims, of course, the US did in fact blow out Spain with Gasol, by 37 (37?). Just like they blew out almost every other team they played. Make no mistake, the US put on a dominating performance in this Olympics. And comparing the Lakers v. Spain for the international game is not as much of a Laker edge as you might think. Sasha Vujacic, Vlad Radmanovic, Luke Walton, Derek Fisher, Jordan Farmar, etc. are essentially a wash for Ricky Rubio, Rudy Fernandez, Juan Carlos Navarro, Marc Gasol, Jose Calderon, etc.

Second, one of the values of having a team of 12 all-stars is that it's extremely unlikely that they'll all have an off game at the same time. If my starting PF is struggling, I'd rather go to Chris Bosh, Carlos Boozer, or Tayshaun Prince than go to Leon Powe, PJ Brown, or (god forbid) Brian Scalabrine. Given that this is a single elimination tournament, I want as much depth and support as I can to ward off injuries, bad shooting, etc.

Third, this team was "A TEAM" and has been for three summers. That's been the entire point of the refocused USA Basketball effort - get everyone together playing with each other as a team. And in case you missed it, they did that extremely well over the past two weeks. Were the defensive rotations perfect? No. Were there some miscommunications? Sure. But this was not 5 guys playing one-on-one. This group played very, very high level team basketball.

Fourth, there are substantial differences between NBA ball and International ball that affect team makeup and strategy. Some things that make NBA teams good may not translate, and vice versa.

Fifth, I will happily spot you the Celtics and take Team USA to win one game, best of three, five, seven, what have you. The Celtics would have a decent chance at winning gold. But they would not be a heavy favorite, and they would be extremely prone to that one bad night that is deathly in a single elimination competition.

NYC Duke Fan
08-24-2008, 06:41 PM
This quote comes from the article that Gotham Devil posted ("Everybody wants to talk about NBA players being arrogant, being selfish, being individuals," Bryant said after the gold-medal win. "But what you saw here was a team.") in another thread.

"Everybody wants to talk about NBA players being arrogant, being selfish, being individuals," Bryant said after the gold-medal win. "But what you saw here was a team."

I'm perfectly happy and comfortable with our team the way it is if they have that attitude. That will be Coach K's legacy to the Olympic team.

Don't necessarily think it will be Coach K's ," legacy", Other preominent coaches have won the basketball gold medal, and I don't think that it is their legacy to the Olympic team.Coach K and Mike D'Antonio did an excellent job, and both deserve the credit that they are getting,but with that talent they were suppose to win. You might disagree but I think that Jim Calhoun, Bill Self, Rick Pitino, Tom Izzo , Roy Williams among others would have also brought home the gold medal.

pfrduke
08-24-2008, 06:41 PM
I've always been a fan of the idea of having a designated "US Olympic team" made up of non-college, non-NBA players. The team would play together all year with international rules and build the cohesive togetherness that no group of all-stars can have. In terms of players, it seems like there are a ton of great talents that just fit better in the international game than in the NBA. Guys like Trajan Langdon come through college, don't find a fit in the NBA, and then go overseas to great success. Why not keep the 15-20 best here in a year-round team, rather than asking NBA guys to sacrifice their health and risk major injury after a grueling season.

I've loved watching K and the best talent in the world over the last couple of weeks, but the toll it takes on players is just so major, even with no specific in-game injury. We may not win every year (OTOH we may if familiarity, chemistry, and "fit" with the international style provide enough of a boost), but I know I'd love to cheer that team on, especially if it can bring players like Trajan with college star power back to the big stage.

Just my 2 cents.

This is, I think, a better idea than sending the NBA champion, but there are practical issues that would keep this from happening. Most significantly, how is USA Basketball going to come up with the budget of an NBA team? To keep a core group of players good enough to win on the international stage together, they'll likely have to be paid at least as much as they could earn in Europe, which is a considerable amount of money (see, e.g., Josh Childress).

DevilCastDownfromDurham
08-24-2008, 06:50 PM
37 (37?).

Heh. 37. "Hey, hey you, get back here!"


Third, this team was "A TEAM" and has been for three summers. That's been the entire point of the refocused USA Basketball effort - get everyone together playing with each other as a team. And in case you missed it, they did that extremely well over the past two weeks. Were the defensive rotations perfect? No. Were there some miscommunications? Sure. But this was not 5 guys playing one-on-one. This group played very, very high level team basketball.

I do think K, the staff, and the team deserve a tremendous amount of credit for working to become a real "team" in the short amount of time they had available, and I think the jury's still out on whether we can keep that going with a volunteer, part-time "program." So far the continuity looks good with Paul, etc. talking about re-upping for 2012. I will be curious to see if that team spirit (speaking of early 1990s references) continues in the absence of the unique circumstances of these games and K's unparalleled leadership. Even moreso if a high profile player, god forbid, suffers a major injury playing in the summer. I guess time will tell.

DevilCastDownfromDurham
08-24-2008, 06:55 PM
This is, I think, a better idea than sending the NBA champion, but there are practical issues that would keep this from happening. Most significantly, how is USA Basketball going to come up with the budget of an NBA team? To keep a core group of players good enough to win on the international stage together, they'll likely have to be paid at least as much as they could earn in Europe, which is a considerable amount of money (see, e.g., Josh Childress).

That's a fair point. I tend to think of the NBA as having basically limitless financial resources, especially in tandem with the Nike's of the world, who I expect would love to sponsor something like this, but I know that's not completely the case. A few years ago I would have argued that you could put together a team for much less than an NBA team but I agree that Childress indicates a real change in the market. I do think the NBA + endorsements + the US government could put together a good bit of money for a team. Whether it would be enough for the top-flight international talent, I can't say.

phaedrus
08-24-2008, 07:03 PM
Third, this team was "A TEAM" and has been for three summers. That's been the entire point of the refocused USA Basketball effort - get everyone together playing with each other as a team. And in case you missed it, they did that extremely well over the past two weeks. Were the defensive rotations perfect? No. Were there some miscommunications? Sure. But this was not 5 guys playing one-on-one. This group played very, very high level team basketball.

Here's the real question though: is the effort sustainable? Many of these guys committed three entire summers to USA Basketball, and they were happy to do it. But will they do it again? Does Wade really want to put the extra mileage on his injury-prone body when he could be refreshing after a long season? Does Lebron want to spend the rest of his summers learn how to gell in practice with Chris Paul and Kobe when he should be jacking up 500 jumpers a day in an empty Cleveland gym? Summer for the average NBAer is an opportunity for some R+R and a chance to focus on improving some specific skill or facet of conditioning. For how many years will these guys neglect that?

Bluedog
08-24-2008, 08:17 PM
Plus, Garnett said he didn't want to play on Team USA from the onset even though the program was interested in him. http://www.boston.com/sports/basketball/celtics/articles/2007/11/15/garnett_not_up_for_games/ So, using this strategy only works if 1.) there aren't any key international players on the championship team; 2.) all the American players want to participate; 3.) the team plays more of an international style.

Hard for all the variables to fall in place...

gep
08-24-2008, 08:58 PM
What about a "true" international team... that plays in European league(s)... full-time. Many of the college players after graduation can play on the team, in addition to NBA players who don't make the team. Right now, they play for an assortment of European teams... can't they all get together in a "single" team? Maybe underwritten by USA Basketball... with sponsors/owners/etc...:rolleyes:

billybreen
08-24-2008, 09:29 PM
Heh. 37. "Hey, hey you, get back here!"

Nice!

billybreen
08-24-2008, 09:30 PM
That's a fair point. I tend to think of the NBA as having basically limitless financial resources, especially in tandem with the Nike's of the world, who I expect would love to sponsor something like this, but I know that's not completely the case. A few years ago I would have argued that you could put together a team for much less than an NBA team but I agree that Childress indicates a real change in the market. I do think the NBA + endorsements + the US government could put together a good bit of money for a team. Whether it would be enough for the top-flight international talent, I can't say.

I think this team would get rocked by a Spain or Argentina. Those teams have solid contributors who are NBA role players, but they also have one or two bona fide NBA stars. Without that, I don't think our dedicated team would be able to compete at the very highest levels.

hc5duke
08-24-2008, 10:05 PM
I think this team would get rocked by a Spain or Argentina. Those teams have solid contributors who are NBA role players, but they also have one or two bona fide NBA stars. Without that, I don't think our dedicated team would be able to compete at the very highest levels.

Yeah, it sounds like we'd almost be sending the bronze-winning 1998 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_men%27s_national_basketball_team#199 8_World_Championship_Team_-_The_Dirty_Dozen) team again.


Trajan Langdon, Michael Hawkins, Wendell Alexis, Brad Miller, Bill Edwards, Kiwane Garris, Ashraf Amaya, Jason Sasser, Jimmy Oliver, Jimmy King, Gerard King, David Wood (Coach: Rudy Tomjanovich)

Jumbo
08-24-2008, 10:12 PM
Instead of picking a Dream Team or Redeem Team or whatever to represent the US in men's basketball in the Olympics, what about having the team that wins the NBA title represent the US. If that team has a foreign player than another player could be substituted.

Think about it, the US did not blow out Spain with Pau Gasol, and the US having the best players in the world on their team, but the Celtics with Garnett, Pierce ,Allen and other players beat the Lakers with Gasol AND Kobe.

The team that wins the NBA title plays 82 games AS A TEAM.

I understand that it was only one game in the Olympics for a gold medal and it takes the best of 7 to win a title, but I think the proposal has merits.

Any comments

Did you watch any of the Olympic games?

Bluedevilsfanforever
08-24-2008, 10:29 PM
I don't like that idea. You will also have players that does not want to play. I heard Bill Walton say something today and he was right. After the dream team you got players that thought playing in the Olympics as a job. They really did not want to be there or playing in the Olympics.

Like the 2004 team, that team was bad and you had players that did not want to be there. The 2008 Olympic team you had players that wanted to be there like a Kobe, or a James and so on. It really showed in the 2008 team that they wanted to win Gold for the USA and they wanted to play, they played their hearts out today. They were having fun at the Olympics and they were taking it all in, and they were watching and cheering Phelps on. With this new idea that they are thinking its a bad idea. Because you will have the players that does not want to be there.

DevilCastDownfromDurham
08-24-2008, 10:42 PM
I think this team would get rocked by a Spain or Argentina. Those teams have solid contributors who are NBA role players, but they also have one or two bona fide NBA stars. Without that, I don't think our dedicated team would be able to compete at the very highest levels.

They certainly wouldn't be the heavy favorite that this team was, but I'm pretty much okay with that. I think it's pretty clear that the world has mostly caught up with the U.S. in international basketball and that doesn't really bother me. "Our" game is the NBA and our superstars are stars in that context. In international play, I'm fine with being one of the 3-4 best teams, instead of the prohibitive favorites (which, in any event, I'm not 100% convinced we will be in 2012 and beyond).

I don't think the 1998 "Dirty Dozen" comparison is quite right because it was still a hastily-thrown-together collection of U.S. players. My theory is that players selected for their strengths in the international game can prosper based on long-term, year-round experience playing together in the international rules and style. A more apt comparison, in my mind, would be Greece or Lithuania: a team with 2-3 NBA role-player types (i.e. Lotsacabbages and Kleza) that wins with smart play and teamwork.

K's free form O looked pretty good when we forced steals, but the lack of time together still left us very vulnerable in the half court. I think it would be interesting to see how we could do with year-round teammates running sophisticated O schemes and real familiarity with zones. That's not going to happen with NBA stars (unless we use the "pick an NBA team" idea, which I think would just brutalize that team from a rest/health perspective).

As a nation we have enormous "depth" (as it were) and I think we could find 12-15 guys from the post-college ranks who are great fits that can make the commitment. I'm simply not sophisticated enough regarding the international game to draw up even a decent list, but I bet smarter folks could throw out some really good names.

jma4life
08-25-2008, 12:36 AM
Guys, in the world cup and in international play in general, you don't see a club team representing the national team for any country. Yes soccer is far more globalized but basketball is becoming that way as well as others have mentioned with the Spurs. If the system works in soccer, I think it can and has worked with basketball.

In addition, from a fan's perspective, its a lot more exciting to see these guys play than it would be to see the Celtics or something.

And I basically agree with all of the other points that have been made in opposition to this idea. I just see way too many flaws with it though and while its an interesting idea to entertain, I sincerely hope we never adopt that system.

NYC Duke Fan
08-25-2008, 01:41 AM
Well, to start, you singled out the Gold medal game to say we didn't blow out Spain with Gasol. In prelims, of course, the US did in fact blow out Spain with Gasol, by 37 (37?). Just like they blew out almost every other team they played. Make no mistake, the US put on a dominating performance in this Olympics. And comparing the Lakers v. Spain for the international game is not as much of a Laker edge as you might think. Sasha Vujacic, Vlad Radmanovic, Luke Walton, Derek Fisher, Jordan Farmar, etc. are essentially a wash for Ricky Rubio, Rudy Fernandez, Juan Carlos Navarro, Marc Gasol, Jose Calderon, etc.

Second, one of the values of having a team of 12 all-stars is that it's extremely unlikely that they'll all have an off game at the same time. If my starting PF is struggling, I'd rather go to Chris Bosh, Carlos Boozer, or Tayshaun Prince than go to Leon Powe, PJ Brown, or (god forbid) Brian Scalabrine. Given that this is a single elimination tournament, I want as much depth and support as I can to ward off injuries, bad shooting, etc.

Third, this team was "A TEAM" and has been for three summers. That's been the entire point of the refocused USA Basketball effort - get everyone together playing with each other as a team. And in case you missed it, they did that extremely well over the past two weeks. Were the defensive rotations perfect? No. Were there some miscommunications? Sure. But this was not 5 guys playing one-on-one. This group played very, very high level team basketball.

Fourth, there are substantial differences between NBA ball and International ball that affect team makeup and strategy. Some things that make NBA teams good may not translate, and vice versa.

Fifth, I will happily spot you the Celtics and take Team USA to win one game, best of three, five, seven, what have you. The Celtics would have a decent chance at winning gold. But they would not be a heavy favorite, and they would be extremely prone to that one bad night that is deathly in a single elimination competition.

As to your comparison of Spain to The Laker team, you forgot that Kobe was now on the Lakers not on the USA team

ice-9
08-25-2008, 01:50 AM
Don't necessarily think it will be Coach K's ," legacy", Other preominent coaches have won the basketball gold medal, and I don't think that it is their legacy to the Olympic team.Coach K and Mike D'Antonio did an excellent job, and both deserve the credit that they are getting,but with that talent they were suppose to win. You might disagree but I think that Jim Calhoun, Bill Self, Rick Pitino, Tom Izzo , Roy Williams among others would have also brought home the gold medal.

While I do think other college coaches could get it done (though perhaps with more uncertainty), I do think Coach K has established a legacy. In the same way Larry Brown became symbolic of all that was wrong in the 2004 team, Coach K will become symbolic of all that is right with the 2008 team. Every time an article is written about USA basketball over the next 4 years, that article will reference the turnaround achieved by this year's team and Coach K will get some of that credit. Other coaches could have gotten it done, sure, but it was Coach K who actually did it and he will be recognized accordingly. In short, it is the media that will establish Coach K's legacy in USA basketball. (Ironic huh? :))

pfrduke
08-25-2008, 09:58 AM
As to your comparison of Spain to The Laker team, you forgot that Kobe was now on the Lakers not on the USA team

No, I didn't. I intentionally compared the role players from each team. Obviously Kobe gives the Lakers a head start. But aside from him (and Gasol, who would be on any team Spain that played the Celtics), the Lakers are not really that much better than Spain.

Any substantive response to the points I made?

pfrduke
08-25-2008, 10:00 AM
While I do think other college coaches could get it done (though perhaps with more uncertainty), I do think Coach K has established a legacy. In the same way Larry Brown became symbolic of all that was wrong in the 2004 team, Coach K will become symbolic of all that is right with the 2008 team. Every time an article is written about USA basketball over the next 4 years, that article will reference the turnaround achieved by this year's team and Coach K will get some of that credit. Other coaches could have gotten it done, sure, but it was Coach K who actually did it and he will be recognized accordingly. In short, it is the media that will establish Coach K's legacy in USA basketball. (Ironic huh? :))

To be fair, Jerry Colangelo deserves a huge amount of this credit as well. He (along with K) established the philosophy for rebuilding USA basketball, and without his leadership of the entire program, this wouldn't have happened.

NYC Duke Fan
08-25-2008, 10:56 AM
To be fair, Jerry Colangelo deserves a huge amount of this credit as well. He (along with K) established the philosophy for rebuilding USA basketball, and without his leadership of the entire program, this wouldn't have happened.

And Do Not Forget The Contribution made by Mike D'Antonio. He knows these players from the NBA and I do not think that Coach K would have been so successful without his input. They both deserve equal credit.

greybeard
08-25-2008, 01:25 PM
This Olympics might have been "the Perfect Storm" for US basketball and the Olympics. Who knows where things will go from here.

We had been embarassed previously, the games were in China with its huge potential market for NBA stars to cultivate, you had Colangelo and K colaborating, and David Stern just licking his chops at all the free marketing his game was getting.

Four years down the road, we're talking England, not China; we've already been there, done that; no chip on the shoulder, no pride to be redeemed, and an older Colangelo and no K. More importantly, greater parity still.

At that point, why would NBA players want to play for nothing for three summers? Would Stern be so supportive? Maybe his league could make some money off a world tournament.

Me, I'm bettin that this is a one-time deal. I only hope I'm around to say I was right.

yancem
08-25-2008, 03:48 PM
Don't necessarily think it will be Coach K's ," legacy", Other preominent coaches have won the basketball gold medal, and I don't think that it is their legacy to the Olympic team.Coach K and Mike D'Antonio did an excellent job, and both deserve the credit that they are getting,but with that talent they were suppose to win. You might disagree but I think that Jim Calhoun, Bill Self, Rick Pitino, Tom Izzo , Roy Williams among others would have also brought home the gold medal.

I think that you underestimate the importance of K's style and leadership abilities. Coaching this team had less to do about X'x and O's and more to do about motivation and convincing the players to buy into the importance of representing the US and restoring our image. I'm not sure that Calhoun could have done it. Self, I'm not sure about, I need more time watching him. Pitino probably could have brought home the gold and Izzo and Williams would have had a decent shot.

Don't forget that Larry Brown (who is widely considered a great nba coach) did a lousy job motivating the team in '04. Even K couldn't get the team playing enough like a team in '06 to win world championship. If we have learned nothing else over the last decade we should all know by now that superior talent does not necessarily trump a good "TEAM". K and Colangelo not only picked great talent (anyone could have done that) they picked motivated players that wanted to be at the Olympics and got them to buy into the importance of playing like a team. With the egos that many nba player have, that is no small feat.

Jumbo
08-25-2008, 05:56 PM
And Do Not Forget The Contribution made by Mike D'Antonio. He knows these players from the NBA and I do not think that Coach K would have been so successful without his input. They both deserve equal credit.

Who is "Mike D'Antonio?"

phaedrus
08-25-2008, 06:45 PM
Who is "Mike D'Antonio?"

He's the guy who resigned after losing to the San Antoni Spurs too many times.

ForeverBlowingBubbles
08-25-2008, 07:19 PM
this sounds like a day dream that really has no basis or real reason to it.

I have them all the time... :)

brevity
08-25-2008, 08:45 PM
So many problems with this idea/thread.

1. Why single out every 4th NBA champion? Setting aside the international pedigree of the Spurs, surely you realize that the 2005, 2006, or 2007 squads are just as Olympic-caliber as the team that HAPPENS to win in an Olympic year. Sending the Celtics to represent the USA seems kind of random.

2. I can't even imagine how NBA general managers will position their teams every 4th year. Do they try to make their teams better (for Olympic exposure) or worse (to relax during the offseason and start the next season strong)? And, throwing in the reality of international players, do they get traded away from teams that want to stay all-American? I have no idea, but let's not find out.

3. No team wants to reach the peak of an NBA title and then go right back to work to face a bunch of national teams. It diminishes their season and, yes, their title.

4. Money. There's about four different ways I can elaborate. NBA franchises aren't going to make any money by playing what amounts to a series of away games. The telecasts offer no additional profit to the team or the league. International merchandise sales stem from the jerseys of individual players, not anything team-oriented. There's no opportunity for cross-promotion with local or regional businesses.

5. What if Toronto wins?

As usual, I'm interested in what no one talks about. And here it is: as the NBA becomes even more international in scope, and the NBA Finals continue to dwarf any matchup of national teams, is it possible that basketball will outgrow the Olympics?

I think so. If we're not quite there already, there will come a time when basketball does not have its biggest stage at the Olympics. That's already true of soccer and baseball, each of which enjoy a separate world event.

And even then, I'm not sure if any special event that exists outside of the pro leagues will stay that dominant. Golf and tennis will never create anything that's bigger than its existing majors.

Jumbo
08-25-2008, 09:23 PM
5. What if Toronto wins?


Oh man, that's a high-quality post right there. Bravo, sir. Bravo!

Wander
08-25-2008, 09:38 PM
Then Bosh would have to play for Canada's team. Damn.

KandG
08-26-2008, 12:18 AM
Who is "Mike D'Antonio?"


I see NYC Duke fan constantly using this name, and I assume he is riffing on the NY Knicks' Donnie Walsh introducing D'Antoni as the new head coach of the Knicks last May by calling him "Mike D'Antonio".

At least I hope the poster is being playful, and doesn't think that's actually his name.