Who is excited about the
2012 Olympic Games in London? We are just a few weeks away from the Opening Ceremony and I could not be more excited! There are so many story lines... -
will Phelps become the most decorated Olympian of all-time?
-Phelps vs. Lochte
-the Men’s 100M Sprint – Bolt vs. Gay
-the U.S Women’s Soccer Team But one story line that comes up every year for me is the
Men’s USA Basketball Team. With the announcement of the final squad behind us, it is now time to look towards the prospects of the USA Team securing another Gold Medal! I love how Hall-of-Fame Coach Mike Krzyzewski (“Coach K”) has constructed this team. In the ’92, ’96, ’00 Olympic Games the USA Squad was pretty easy to build…pick the top 5 guards, top 5 forwards and top 2 centers in the NBA, head to the Olympics, roll through the field by an average of 30+ points per game and win a gold medal. That was a pretty easy approach!
Then came The American Team’s 6
th place finish at the 2002 FIBA World Championship and the embarrassing bronze medal performance at the 2004 Summer Olympic Games…in my opinion this sad time was the result of American stars losing focus on the importance of representing their country and the rest of the world “catching up” as basketball becomes more of an international game. In 2008 Coach K took the reins and began to “re-build” the U.S into the power the world is accustom to. The international game is much different than the game of the NBA…the international game is focused on finesse, fundamentals, half court offensive sets, constant movement and shooting. Take a look at the
USA Basketball Team’s roster, notice anything? Fast. Guard heavy. Long. Fast. Athletic. Fast. Versatile. We have one “true” center in Tyson Chandler…but Chandler isn’t the traditional big man that we’ve grown accustom to watching in the NBA. He is a 7”1, long, athletic “big” who can get up and down the court like a guard, rebound and block any shot that goes up near the hoop! Kevin Love and Blake Griffin are really the only other true “Forwards” on the squad and everyone else can play either guard or forward depending on flow of the game. Versatile! Coach K has constructed a TEAM. This is no longer the best group of NBA Players thrown together to put on a
Harlem Globetrotters type show…The USA Basketball Team is now a collection of hand-picked players that will become a team. A team to represent the United States of America. I hate that we had to go through those “dark years” from 2004-2007, but in hindsight it was for the best. Maybe we had to go through that to understand where we needed to go to get back to our spot as the world’s #1 team! The 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London will not be an easy tournament for Team USA Basketball…but I could not be more confident in our coaching staff and our players and I am excited to watch them in their quest towards representing the USA and taking home gold! "Follow" us on Twitter -
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