AS an American, I am really embarrassed.How could a team of Alll-Stars play so HORRIBLY!!!
1. I'm not embarrassed. Whether you like it or not, the rest of the world has caught up enough, talent-wise, that you just can't throw together a team of "all-stars" together, let them practice for two weeks, then go play a brand of basketball they've never even been made aware of.
It isn't talent. The U.S. still has the talent, and more of it, than anyone. It's attutide; it's mindest; it's fundamentals.
What would I do, if I were running USA basketball? Several things:
-Start BEGGING High School and College coaches to teach the FUNDAMENTALS of the game: the U.S. players don't even know what the word means. They don't know how to pass anymore; they don't know how to move without the ball anymore; they don't know how to play defense; they don't know how to shoot free throws.
I was reading CNNSI the other day, and the article mentions how HS
and college coaches are afraid to teach fundamentals, because they'll "lose" their players. Fine-lose them. If they don't want to learn, then throw their butts off the team, and find the athletes who want to do more than dunk.
-Don't just pick the starting lineup in the NBA All-Star game. In other words, get pro-and college-players, who WANT to play. Get players who can shoot from 3-point land; who can move without the ball; who can pass, and who can play defense.
-Put together the team A YEAR IN
ADVANCE. Let them play an NBA season worth of games. Get a commitment from outstanding college and pro players. If they're college players, get the commitment, but allow them to keep that year of eligibility. If they're pro players, guarantee them their contract for that year. But make a TEAM. You didn't see a team with the U.S. You saw a collection of fantastic players, who, if they had time to gel, would win the gold going unbeaten, I'm convinced.
-Play the international rules game in college and the NBA. The U.S. is the only part of the world not playing the game as it's played in the Olympics. Change that. Make it a truly global game, with the same rules.
It isn't life or death, but the U.S. isn't going to win another gold for a long time, unless they change how they pick the team; how they prepare the team; how they coach the team. It's that simple.
The world has caught up. When that happens, you find away to put them behind another step again.