August 17, 2004

Like it wasn't bad enough. : Apparently, Allen Iverson broke his thumb in Sunday's game and aggravated it in Monday's practice. He's still hoping to play today, though...

Sheesh, it never rains but it pours, huh?

posted by lil_brown_bat to other at 12:46 PM - 10 comments

Well, at least that's a better excuse for losing than "it's just because Shaq and KG aren't playing".

posted by chicobangs at 02:12 PM on August 17, 2004

I didn't post it to the Puerto Rico loss thread, but nonetheless: Sir Charles puts it on wax. Most telling quotes: "And those (U.S.) guys are struggling. They don't have a point guard, and the only guy on the team that knows how to do anything but score is Tim Duncan. " What about shooters?: "That's bogus," he said. "They shouldn't have to shoot it from outside. If they play man-to-man defense, pressure and force an up-tempo game, they'll get layups and fast-break baskets. We let 'em play slow." And sadly: "The other guys (complain) about playing time or shots and things like that because they can't do anything but score." We offer Carmelo Anthony, who guaranteed gold before the Games, as Exhibit A. "Three minutes," he told reporters of his playing time against Puerto Rico. "I came over here to help my team. I didn't come over to just come over for a great experience. Some guys came out and they were 0 for 8. I shot the ball three times." That's a stat rat. "I've said publicly before that I didn't enjoy 1996 as much as 1992," Barkley said. "In 1992 there were no complaints from anybody. In 1996, we had a couple of guys who didn't come to practice because they were unhappy about playing time.

posted by lilnemo at 06:08 PM on August 17, 2004

I think that this was just the worst assortment of guys they could have got. None of these guys outside of Duncan knows a thing about playing team basketball. And not one of them can shoot - this is unbelievable to me. Look at the percentages! Did anyone not see that being a problem?

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 11:39 PM on August 17, 2004

If Chuck didn't finish the job, Larry Brown will throw his own team under the bus. From the Article: When asked about shortening his bench and using few players in the rotation, Brown said, "Other teams accept it a lot better than our team would. We've got to be really careful when selecting our team. To find role players in our environment is the way to go, but not the way we've been making teams." His players' commitment? "We're trying to entertain sometimes rather than play." Bad shot selection? "I think that was the first comment I made to our team, without trying to be too offensive." International officiating? "Unpredictable." His message is clear: I'm flying solo for the U.S. of A. Listen, he makes valid points. But that's not the issue. It is useless for him to sit there now and just rip everyone and everything when he's been hired to do a job. This isn't his fiefdom with an NBA franchise; it's the United States Olympic men's basketball team. The sacrifice he's asking his players to make for the greater cause is one he won't do himself. Sometimes, you've got to stand there and take the hits. Sometimes, you've got to protect your people. He won't do it. USA Basketball is getting killed for this team, and Brown just piled on with the rest of the country. Way to go LB. Stay away from the caffeine!

posted by lilnemo at 05:30 PM on August 18, 2004

Sometimes, when the players are being bitchy primma donnas and won't listen, the coach is entitiled to say so and not "just take the hits." Assuming he's tried to get the message through in private.

posted by rodgerd at 05:40 PM on August 18, 2004

I dunno lilnemo, I thought that article was a total hatchet job by a so-so sportswriter looking for the 17th different angle from which to get a story published. You know too much about hoops to not recognize that LB is saying what EVERYONE is thinking....especially when he saw how badly George Karl got rocked when USA Basketball essentially pulled the same shit.

posted by smithers at 09:35 PM on August 18, 2004

Being publicly harsh on superstars who never hear negative press (has anything bad ever been said about Lebron before? About 'Melo?) is often the only way to get them to listen. Brown is one of the greatest coaches in the history of the game; it's hard to fault him for being pissed at his players (and at the ones who had 'better things' to do this summer.)

posted by tieguy at 10:09 PM on August 18, 2004

Yeah, but smithers is also right on with the "17th different angle" comment. Unoriginal thought, at this point, to say the least. A month ago, before the pre-Olympics matchups, someone who wrote an article along the lines of, "I don't think these guys are gonna impress" would be saying something. Now, it's getting a little irksome, when a newspaper can print two and three columns and articles a day on the US men as part of their pig-pile contribution, and at the same time relegate the US women to part of a paragraph on page 5. I guess the only way it'll change is after the men have been eliminated and the women are in the finals. "Breaking news! The US men's basketball team is really sucking!"

posted by lil_brown_bat at 06:03 AM on August 19, 2004

Carmelo Anthony should not be in that team he acts like a spoiled and brat and his body language sez it all. I support Larry Brown not giving him playing time, he should just let him fly back to US, because he is a distraction to the team. I watch the game today against Australia they were down 12 points, Carmelo was shown on camera laughing and his team mate tap him on the knee like saying to stop. He is not a team player who deserves to wear the USA, to represent our country. I like OMeka Okufor demeanor better he know his position, last couple of min. when he played he was given the ball inside the perimeter and he could have easily post it up, but he gave up again to a team mate. They were leading by much. Please, if somebody is listening, take Carmelo out of there.

posted by edm-philly at 11:27 AM on August 19, 2004

Sounds like the coach agrees with you, edm:

[Brown] also kept Carmelo Anthony on the bench for all but 2 minutes. "I don't need a guy who doesn't want to buy in,'' Brown said. "How you play, how you practice and how you act determines how much you play.''
From the AP.

posted by tieguy at 12:14 PM on August 19, 2004

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