HoopsHype USA Basketball rumors

September 19, 2014 Updates

In the middle of the U.S. team's run in Spain, Williams described Davis, now 21, as "the lead dog among alpha dogs," a portrayal not at all hyperbolic. "I couldn't tell you the place or the timing of it all," said Williams, who showed off his own gold medal on Wednesday, "but over the period from Vegas to Madrid, I just watched him watch other people. "He was around a former MVP (Derrick Rose). He watched (James) Harden. People don't know how hard Harden works. I think A.D. was able to watch him work an hour or two hours before practice with his trainer and then come to practice. I think that had an impact on him. The great ones do more. I think he looked at that, and our after- practice workouts when he and I got going, I think that had an impact on him just watching those guys." New Orleans Times-Picayune

September 18, 2014 Updates

Unprompted, Krzyzewski brought up the columnist's insinuation that Krzyzewski had arranged for someone to take a photograph of Krzyzewski embracing an injured Paul George in George's hospital room — to both deflect attention from the NBA "losing a $100 million star in a worthless scrimmage" and "for all those moms and dads to see the compassion and caring of Duke's coach." Unprompted, Krzyzewski explained what had happened leading up to that photo. "That was a really bad thing, to bring up Paul George," Krzyzewski said. "After he was injured, USA Basketball was in the trauma room — me, Jerry (Colangelo), a bunch of NBA people and whatever. There were too many people there, so they asked for only the family and the doctors. We went back. A few of the people from USA Basketball left that morning. I was staying with my family for a couple of days. USA Today Sports

"I went back to the hospital the next day secretly. ESPN had cameras in front of the hospital. We were able to go through the back and go in. I spent a half hour with Paul, his mom, dad, two sisters, a couple of friends and his girlfriend. There was an emotional moment during it. I did not take any pictures. I did not know a picture was taken. I think his sister took a picture and she tweeted it because it was an emotional scene. "To say that I orchestrated that and used Paul George to show that I was a good guy is really wrong. For anybody to think that, if you want to think that, then you are a bad person." USA Today Sports

During one six-week period in the late summer of 2014, Cousins tinkered madly with his narrative, changing perceptions and recasting his image, emerging as a significant, perhaps invaluable member of the senior national team, and displaying a familiar dramatic flair at the end. Here is what coach Mike Krzyzewski said moments after the USA’s 129-92 gold-medal romp Sunday over Serbia: “The first five minutes of tonight’s game, they knocked us back. Cousins really, I think, turned the game around. I don’t only think; I know. Watching (him), I’m saying, ‘Whoa,’ we just made another stop, or he just made another stop. He knocked the ball off the rim and they didn’t score. (Nenad) Krstic wasn’t able to score because he bodied up on him. …” Sacramento Bee

But Cousins can’t worry about who’s in, who’s out. He merely has to remain, well, the King of Spain. “You can use all the superlatives you want,” Colangelo said Tuesday afternoon, “and apply them to DeMarcus. He made the team, made a major contribution, made tremendous strides. In the locker room after our win over Serbia (earned an automatic berth to the Rio Games), DeMarcus in particular was emotional. He hugged me and thanked me for putting him on the team, and I told him, ‘the past is the past. This is the beginning of your career. Take everything you learned back to Sacramento. You can build on this and have a tremendous career.’ ” Sacramento Bee

September 17, 2014 Updates
September 15, 2014 Updates

The end's coming for USA Basketball's grip on the game in the States, but once change goes into effect come the 2018 World Cup, it won't matter much to Krzyzewski anymore. He still has two full summers of USA Basketball access left to him, and that'll make it a full decade of control. As one Duke alumnus would tell you: There is a USA Basketball storefront selling patriotism and duty with a backroom reality that peddles the Blue Devils and Nike swooshes. Yahoo! Sports

Krzyzewski never violated an NCAA rule when he climbed aboard a flight, flew cross-country and addressed the 2013 under-19 USA Basketball national team at its Colorado Springs training camp. He addressed players in a group, and talked to them individually, sources told Yahoo Sports. For the record, Krzyzewski is USA Basketball's senior national coach and the visit gave him an opportunity to personally welcome those young men into the program's feeder system. Yahoo! Sports

September 14, 2014 Updates

Faried and the U.S. fighting off the favorite’s tag now seems a bit preposterous, what with the way the U.S. National Team has mowed down the competition. They’ve won their eight games leading up to this point by an average of 32.5 points, a number skewed a bit by the 59-point blowout of Finland in their opener. “I never knew we were a heavy favorite,” Faried said. “That surprises me because before, when we first started, everybody said we were going to lose and we’re not that good. So as far as being a heavy favorite, we just have to take that for what it is and go out there like we’re the underdogs still.” NBA.com

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