According to multiple sources, one factor in Wiggins’ decision to decline Canada Basketball’s most recent invitation is his strained relationship with head coach Jay Triano, stemming from his previous and only experience playing with the senior men’s team in 2015. As Triano’s club squandered an opportunity to qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympics, losing a heartbreaker to Venezuela at the FIBA Americas in Mexico City, Wiggins watched the final moments from the bench.
The belief is that Stauskas, also unavailable this summer, was unhappy with his usage at the FIBA Americas tournament in 2015 as well. […] They’ll miss Wiggins, to be sure, but they’re confident they have enough talent to compete without him. Most importantly, they’ve found a group of guys that recognize and appreciate the value in representing their country, that want to be there. They’ve left the door open for Wiggins, Stauskas and , who has never played for the senior team, but they’re not going to beg and nor should they.
David Locke: Is Mexico City a viable NBA city? Adam Silver: Mexico City, I believe, can be a viable NBA city. We’ve played several regular-season games there mid-season. They have a beautiful arena there in Mexico City, obviously a huge, growing fan base—a city of 22 million. It would open up, arguably, a whole country to us in the way Toronto has done for Canada. So it’s something we continue to look at. It would need to be bargained with the players. It’s not about to happen in the next two to three years, but over time, I could see it as a great market to potentially expand to.
Mike George, an NBA agent who had been working at Excel Sports Management for the last five years, has opened his own agency in Canada and will co-represent several NBA players with his former employer. George’s new agency is called One Legacy Sports Management and is based in Toronto. Together with Excel, One Legacy will co-represent Magic center Khem Birch, Grizzlies forward Dillon Brooks, Nets forward Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, Nuggets guard Jamal Murray, Bucks center-forward Thon Maker, Mavericks forward-center Dwight Powell and Nets guard Rashad Vaughn.
Birch, Brooks, Murray and Powell are Canadian. George is Canadian and was a teacher, coach and co-founder of CIA Bounce, a Canadian AAU basketball program that has produced NBA players, including Timberwolves forward Andrew Wiggins. He became an agent in 2013 when he joined Excel. “It’s just something I wanted to do, especially in Canada,” George said of starting his own agency. “There’s never been a major sports basketball agency in Canada, so it’s the first one.” Both George and Jeff Schwartz, Excel founder and president, who’s also an NBA agent, said George’s departure from Excel was amicable.