Tag:Team USA
Posted on: April 4, 2010 1:13 pm
Edited on: April 4, 2010 1:36 pm

LeBron doesn't respect Colangelo's threat

BOSTON -- After LeBron James and Dwayne Wade both strongly hinted in the past week that they're considering skipping the World Championships in Turkey this summer, USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo responded with a warning: Such a decision could jeopardize their spots on the 2012 Olympic team.

LeBron lobbed his own response back to Colangelo on Sunday: He doesn't think that's fair.

The war of words is on.

"I think everyone in the U.S.A. knows what type of commitment these guys have made, including myself, since 2003," James said before the Cavaliers played the Celtics. "I'm not trying to bash Jerry or anything like that, because he's a good guy and I respect him. I don't respect that because of the commitment we've all given to the U.S.A. Right off the bat, we didn't second guess it at all. If we're jeopardizing being in London, what can we do?"

In recruiting members of the 2008 Olympic gold medal team to return for the 2012 Olympics in London, Colangelo has consistently presented to them his desire for a two-year commitment: Win the 2010 worlds in Turkey to earn an automatic Olympic berth, and they get the summer of 2011 off.

But the summer of 2010 is more complicated for James, Wade, Chris Bosh and other 2008 Olympians who will have a chance to be unrestricted free agents on July 1. James also has plans to participate in the filming of a movie; the combination of on-court and off-court responsibilities would seem to make it difficult at best for him to travel to Turkey.

Last week, Colangelo told Yahoo! Sports, "There are no free passes to London." He has since backtracked somewhat, acknowledging that he doesn't expect free agents to practice with Team USA until their situations are resolved. It would be almost inconceivable for Colangelo to punish James for skipping the worlds by leaving him off the Olympic team for London. But in the meantime, he has to maintain the appearance of consistency; if James and Wade bow out, others could follow.

"If that is the case, we'll have to see when it happens," James said. "There's a lot that goes on with being a professional athlete other than just basketball."
Posted on: July 7, 2009 9:56 pm

Coach K Back for 2012 Olympics

Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski, who guided Team USA to Olympic gold in Beijing last summer, has decided to accept an invitation to return for the 2010 world championships in Turkey and 2012 Olympics in London, CBSSports.com has confirmed.

The official announcement will come July 22, when Team USA opens a training camp in Las Vegas for players who did not participate in the 2008 Summer Games. Krzyzewski's decision was first reported by the Boston Globe and confirmed to CBSSports.com by a person close to the Duke coach.

Jerry Colangelo, managing director of USA Basketball, had sought a two-year commitment for '10 and '12 from Coach K and existing members of the Olympic team. He declined to confirm Krzyzewski's decision, but said on the phone, "When you have something very positive in place, you do everything you can to try to keep it going. So there’s a lot of reasons to keep everyone in place, and hopefully it works out that way."
Posted on: June 9, 2009 8:50 pm

Coach K not ready to commit to Team USA

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Mike Krzyzewski still isn't ready to renew his commitment to coaching Team USA, despite Jerry Colangelo's best efforts to push him for an answer.

"He was pushing the check," Coach K said of a recent dinner meeting in Chicago with Colangelo, the managing director of USA Basketball.

Krzyzewski said he expects to make a decision by July on whether he will return to the sideline for the 2010 World Championships in Turkey and the '12 Olympics in London. Participating in an announcement of iHoops, a new basketball collaboration among the NBA, NCAA, Nike, and adidas before Game 3 of the NBA Finals Tuesday night, Coach K said he had dinner in Chicago with Colangelo the night before, but didn't give him a commitment yet.

"I've met with Jerry to discuss the future, just these next four years," Krzyzewski said. "... By the time we have our [training camp] in mid-July, I think a lot of things will be put forward at that time. I think that’s a good launching point for USA Basketball."

Just as deftly as he passed on the question of returning to Team USA, Coach K nicely sidestepped a reporter who asked him to compare Kobe Bryant and LeBron James, since he's coached both of them.

"They’re both on my team," Krzyzewski said. "I think in Kobe’s case, in the NBA when you're six years apart, they have dogs’ lives in terms of their career. Kobe’s almost in a different part of his career. You can look at Kobe and say what he’s accomplished and what he’s still accomplishing. LeBron hasn’t done that. But can he do that? Yeah. 

"LeBron is a very very unusual athlete," Coach K said. "He has that tattoo on his back, 'The Chosen One.' One day I said, 'I'm going to get a tattoo. I'm going to get that 'Chosen One' put on my back. He leaned down and said, 'Coach, there’s only one chosen one.' But he could be.

"When it’s all said and done, I think you will be talking about two of the top 10. ... You know what the similarity is? They’re both brilliant and they’re both team guys."

Asked whether he'd want Kobe or LeBron to take the last shot in a game for him, Krzyzewski said, "I’d want LeBron to dribble it and hit Kobe, which is what happened in the Olympics. And we won."
Posted on: June 7, 2009 7:17 pm
Edited on: June 7, 2009 7:25 pm

Jackson: No interest in coaching Team USA

LOS ANGELES -- Phil Jackson has won nine NBA titles and is on the verge of passing the late, great Red Auerbach for the most in league history. USA Basketball has been restored to its rightful place at the top with last summer's gold medal performance in Beijing. And never the twain shall meet, Jackson said Sunday before Game 2 of the NBA Finals.

"There was an opportunity maybe six or eight years ago where Mitch [Kupchak, the Lakers' GM], who served also on the USA Basketball team team council at that time, asked me to be part of that coaching staff," Jackson said. "And I said no, I really didn't. It’s something I've never desired to do, so I opted out at that time. I was asked by the Canadians if I’d like to coach their Olympic team. But Steve Nash wasn’t a mature enough player yet, so I had to turn that one down."

Adding a little Zen to the Olympic experience would seem to be all there is left for Jackson to accomplish in basketball. If the Lakers beat Orlando, Jackson will have two many rings for his fingers; he also won a title as a player with the Knicks. But as far as adding a gold medal to his trophy case, Jackson will have to live vicariously through the players he's coached who've won Olympic gold.

It remains to be seen whether Team USA will be in the market for a new coach. Duke's Mike Krzyzewski, who coached the Americans to the gold medal last summer in Beijing, is mulling whether he will renew his commitment to the team. Jerry Colangelo, the managing director of USA Basketball, is in the process of securing player commitments for the 2010 World Championships in Turkey and the 2012 Olympics in London. Colangelo has said he wants to give Krzyzewski as much time as he needs, while Coach K told the Raleigh News & Observer this week that he hasn't ruled out a return to the Olympic sideline.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com