Monday, August 16, 2004

A Modest Proposal

Since Team USA lost to Puerto Rico in Men's Basketball, why not stop wasting NBAers' time and go back to the best college players who actually want to be there? It won't be a big deal if we lose, because we're already getting kicked around by our colonies.
The American team had only 19 days to get ready for the Olympics, but that didn't excuse shooting 3-for-24 from three-point range Sunday. That didn't excuse missing 11 of 29 free throws. And that didn't excuse refusing to play defense; Puerto Rico shot 56 percent from the floor.

While it takes time to become a team, this group will have a difficult time coming together. It's a flawed unit with just one point guard (Stephon Marbury), one center (Tim Duncan) and no outside shooters. Instead, USA basketball summoned several high-flying dunkers -- which amounts to nothing more than a few thrills in international basketball. It's more marketing scheme than actual team.

Before the game, several American players said they wouldn't take any team for granted. They didn't want to face the embarrassment of losing in the Olympics or not coming home with a gold medal.

"This is a big win for the people of Puerto Rico. I was showing pride," Arroyo said. "I know it looked a little cocky, but ... sorry about that."

No need to apologize for playing with pride.


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