Thoughts on the Olympics
Published: Tuesday, August 21, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, August 21, 2012 20:08
I may be in the minority, but I hope this is the last time NBA players are eligible for the Olympics.
There’s the risk that they get injured or that the games will affect their play during the grind of the regular season, but the play that it really hurts is that in the Olympics.
Though the gold medal game was close and exciting, much of the tournament was a farce. The U.S. team, which was essentially an NBA All-Star team, routinely beat teams by dozens of points. The worst was against Nigeria, where the team’s margin of victory was higher than their opponent’s total score (156-73 was the final).
USA Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski denied that the team ran up the score, pointing out that he benched most of the starters and claiming all their shot attempts just went in. I actually believe him because much of the teams they creamed would never be on the same court as them if not for the Olympics.
The legendary Dream Team of 1992 was less about competition than it was about promoting NBA basketball on a global scale. Now, 20 years later, the NBA has players from all over the world, so they don’t need to promote its brand by sending their players to the Olympics.
All it does is make the competition unexciting because it’s obvious who will win. It’s like if a little league team played against the New York Yankees. It’s time that the game goes back to amateurs, so that the competition is actually exciting to watch.
It’s not like the U.S. would lose too much of an advantage because many of our college players are as good as pros anyway.
Though all the track and field talk focused on Usain Bolt, I was happy to see Tyson Gay finally win a medal.
Gay took three golds in the 2007 World Championships and holds several American records. He was expected to do as well for the U.S. in Beijing in 2008, but a hamstring injury hindered his performance, and he was eliminated early in the 100 m semifinals. In London this year, he missed a medal by a hundredth of a second in the 100 m final.
He didn’t leave London empty handed, though, as he was part of the U.S. team that took Silver in the 4x100 relay. It’s too bad injuries prevented him from more, but at least he has on piece of Olympic hardware under his belt.
*Now that Michael Phelps is done swimming professionally, he should be cast as Aquaman in the Justice League movie (if they ever get around to making it, that is). He can’t have a movie career any worse than Shaq.