Rio de Janeiro Rumors
On Wednesday morning, the staff of Pacers Sports & Entertainment gathered on the main court at Bankers Life Fieldhouse to congratulate Pacers forward Paul George on winning a gold medal with USA Basketball at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. George, the first Pacers player to win an Olympic medal since Reggie Miller in 1996, arrived to thunderous applause from the large crowd of employees. With his gold medal draped around his neck, PG shook hands with Pacers President/COO Rick Fuson.
As the United States men’s Olympic basketball team has struggled by its own lofty standards in Rio de Janeiro, former NBA player and current TNT analyst Charles Barkley said the team’s woes are rooted in the construction of its roster. “It’s not a good team to put together,” Barkley, 53, told Sports360AZ.com. “If you take away DeAndre Jordan, every guy on that team is a ball-dominant guy. You see them playing a lot of one-on-one basketball. “That’s the thing I’ve noticed more than anything. Like, you have to understand when you put a team together like that, you have to have some role players.”
Carmelo Anthony had seen what favelas looked like in the movies. Or, to be more accurate, the movie. “I watched ‘City of God’ almost 100 times, and it’s very, very accurate,” the New York Knicks star and Team USA basketball player told USA TODAY Sports. “It was one of them.” For a few hours on Monday, he was one of them too.
“This was on my bucket list, to be honest with you; specifically to go to the favelas — forever,” said Anthony, staying on a nearby cruise ship with his teammates. “I just always wanted to see and experience that. Growing up in Baltimore, and knowing what that was like, in my own favela, you know what I mean? So I wanted to go and experience that for myself. I wanted to touch that.” Anthony, who plans to share his experience as part of his video series “Stay Melo” on Vice Sports, went with a group of “seven or eight” of his associates. He played basketball with kids. He took a picture on a chair that sat at the center of it all, then posted on Instagram, “I discovered that what most people call creepy, scary, and spooky, I call comfy, cozy, and home.”
Klay Thompson, who said he wants to find his way to the athletes’ village for a visit soon, noted the pros and cons of living on the boat. “The pros (of the boat) is the comfort,” Thompson said. “There’s everything we need on there. We have a hot tub, we have a pool, we have a dining room, a nice room. The only con, I’d say, is you feel kind of removed from the Olympic Village and you kind of want to meet these other Olympic athletes. You kind of have to be able to get over there to do it, which is fine.”