National Team coach Sergio Hernandez is optimistic about the chances of Ginobili playing at the Olympic Games for the fourth time with Argentina, though. “To me, he’s going to play in Rio,” Hernandez said in an interview with TyC Sports. “I know he’s going to get angry when he watches this, but he knows how I am.”
Do you still plan on playing in next summer’s Olympics? Yeah. We (Argentina) qualified this summer so we’re going to have a chance to play there (Rio). I’m very happy about that. Will it be your last go-around in the Olympics? Four years is a lot of years. I will be 36 (April 30th) at the beginning of the Olympics so that puts me at 40 for the next ones. That’s a lot of guessing. I’m just taking it year-by-year now.
Vaulet’s future remains unsettled. He could stay in Argentina, move to Europe or be signed by either Brooklyn or its new Long Island Nets D-League team. Under D-League rules, second round picks can sign with a team’s affiliate without counting against the parent club’s roster. He is seen as more of a long term project, but may still be growing and has great length and athleticism although his shooting leaves a lot to be desired. Vaulet said his release and his physique are the two things he needs to most improve. “I know that a development process lies ahead, in trying to reach the United States,” he told Clarin, a Buenos Aires newspaper. “No rushing anything. If it can be next year It will be next year, if it has to be in five years will be in five and you need to be in ten will be in ten. It is now possible, everything will depend on me, my preparation, my development and my enjoyment of the process.”
“While we sometimes automatically say the world has grown closer to catching up to the USA, the truth is, country by country, there’s a bigger gap than ever,” Fraschilla said. “There are quality NBA players among international players, but there are also more quality American players in the NBA who are now in the USA Basketball pool. “Argentina and Spain and the rest of the world for that matter don’t have the depth of talent pools that will be able to – in the next four-year cycle – consistently compete with the USA. Now, it doesn’t mean the USA can’t get beat at some point. But it’s less likely than it was say back in 2004 and 2006.”
Heissler Guillent scored 15 points and Venezuela pulled off another upset, beating Argentina 71-67 on Saturday night to win the FIBA Americas championship for the first time. Guillent scored 19 points in the semifinals against heavy favorite Canada on Friday night to give the Venezuelans their first Olympic berth since Barcelona in 1992. Also Saturday, Canada beat Mexico 84-83 in the third-place game.
Luis Scola (Argentina), who led the tournament averaging 21.1 points, along with 10.1 rebounds per game (2nd best in the tournament), was named Most Valuable Player of the Championship, presented by Tissot. Scola headlined the All-Star Five which also consisted of Heissler Guillent (Venezuela), Andrew Wiggins (Canada), Andres Nocioni (Argentina) and Gustavo Ayon (Mexico).