IOC denies FIBA bid to add 3-on-3 basketball to Olympics
International Olympic Committee denies FIBA request to add 3-on-3 basketball to Olympic slate.
There will be no 3-on-3 tournament in Rio in 2016. From USA Today:
Despite a strong push and official application from FIBA, 3-on-3 basketball will not be part of the program at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro the International Olympic Committee decided in a quiet ruling last month.
In a statement the IOC's executive board said that any "any request from International Federations (IFs) that would result in a higher number of athletes or increased number of medals, thereby adding to the cost and complexity of the Games, would not be considered. At a later stage, the IOC will study the quota-neutral requests already made by IFs for either a swap of event or modifications of competition format."
In another ruling, the IOC declined FIBA's request to increase the number of basketball teams in the Olympics from 12 to 16. The intent was to add more teams but limit the number of games played. Instead of two groups of six with five preliminary round games, FIBA wanted four groups of four with three preliminary games.
This is a bummer, since the idea sounds genuinely interesting and would provide some much-needed excitement to an Olympic tournament that has become pretty boring once Team USA decided to start taking a serious approach under Bryan Colangelo and Mike Krzyzewski. A 3-on-3 tournament presents all sorts of interesting permutation and wrinkles in terms of strategy, skill sets and game play.
But then the IOC has never really been big on making great decisions. Even the increase in number of teams would present a more interesting field. It's also odd that the IOC claims cost as a problem since, you know, they did this.
FIBA is not deterred, though:
"At the same time, 3x3 remains a unique opportunity for the basketball family to further grow and develop around the world, from the streets to the world stage, and in countries that have traditionally been less successful with basketball nationally and internationally."
FIBA is not deterred. It will hold the 3-on-3 world championship in Moscow in June of 2014 and said it will be "ready again for the next opportunity to bid for 3x3 as an Olympic discipline as soon as this is possible."
The plan to add 3-on-3 has been coming for a while, though there's no indication of how such a system would be developed or if it would involve pro, college or other amateur players from the US. Either way, nothing is changing as far as the Olympics are concerned.
Same old field for 2016 and in all likelihood, the same old results.
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