It is unclear if USA Basketball head coach Gregg Popovich is going to coach the team beyond the Tokyo Olympics, but he is going to ride out the coronavirus epidemic for as long as necessary.
USA Basketball managing director Jerry Colangelo said Tuesday that both he and Popovich will remain with the team in 2021, which is when the Tokyo Olympics are expected to take place. The Summer Games have been postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak.
“The commitments everyone made for 2020 are still there, we’re all in and we’re committed,” Colangelo said, via ESPN’s Brian Windhorst. “It’s important to deal with the unknowns and this virus. This too shall pass and we’ll be back for everyone’s well being.”
Team USA training was scheduled to begin July 4 with the Olympics starting July 24, but the Tokyo Games were postponed this week. A new date for the Olympics has not been announced, and it’s possible there could be some scheduling conflicts depending upon if and when the NBA resumes its 2019-20 season. Colangelo admitted that could be a potential issue.
“We will follow the leader. We have to wait to see how everything is laid out and we’ll make the adjustment,” Colangelo said. “Our players are NBA players first, let’s face that. … Changing the window for the NBA is easier said than done. There’s a lot of logistics and contracts to deal with. Same for the Olympics. You have to assume it will be around the same dates.”
Popovich has not yet committed to coaching in the NBA beyond this season, but it makes sense that both he and Colangelo are sticking with Team USA as long as necessary. The coronavirus outbreak has impacted the entire sports calendar. No one could have seen it coming.
Jerry Colangelo helped his son Bryan move up the ranks with the Philadelphia 76ers, and it sounds like the former did all he could to help save the latter’s job.
As we found out on Thursday, it wasn’t enough. Bryan Colangelo turned in his resignation with the Sixers after a investigation determined that his wife was responsible for several social media accounts that featured tweets criticizing the team and divulging private information. According to a report from Kyle Neubeck of Philly Voice, the 78-year-old Jerry Colangelo tried to use his influence to sway the 76ers’ decision.
More than one person who spoke to PhillyVoice on the condition of anonymity suggested Jerry Colangelo tried to intervene on Bryan’s behalf, threatening to interfere with club relationships around the league. The Sixers, aware of Colangelo’s influence around the league and his connection to numerous agents and power brokers after decades of work in basketball, opted to move forward carefully in what team sources described as a chaotic, uncertain environment.
Discussions PhillyVoice had with people inside and outside the organization turned up no connection between Bryan or Bryan’s staff to his father’s actions over the past week.
The elder Colangelo is still with the Sixers as a special adviser, but it seems highly unlikely that he will remain in that role in the wake of what has transpired.
Bryan Colangelo has maintained that he had no knowledge of the tweets, and he placed the blame entirely on his wife in a statement he released after he resigned.
Bryan Colangelo rose up through the ranks with the Philadelphia 76ers thanks in large part to the influence of his father, and Jerry Colangelo is anxious to see how the situation with his son and some alleged social media activity is going to turn out.
The elder Colangelo spoke with Yaron Weitzman of Bleacher Report on Wednesday morning, and he stopped short of defending Bryan and said people would be wise to “be patient and wait for more information.”
Jerry stepped down from his role as chairman of basketball operations with the 76ers after Bryan was hired as general manager in April 2016. The 78-year-old still serves as a special advisor to the organization.
Bryan is going to have a tough time convincing people he was not the person running the Twitter accounts, especially since much of what was written was clearly intended to make him look good. He has taken responsibility for one of the accounts, but fans have provided some information that makes it seem as though he could be the person behind all of them.
We have real evidence that there is at least some concern from a team near the top of the draft about Lonzo Ball’s entourage.
Jerry Colangelo, Philadelphia 76ers special advisor and father of general manager Bryan Colangelo, voiced his concerns about “the people around” Ball — almost certainly a reference to the guard’s controversial father, LaVar.
Colangelo did clarify that he did still think Ball was worthy of a high draft pick.
The conclusions are similar to those drawn by other general managers — Ball’s draft status likely won’t be impacted by LaVar’s antics. It’s interesting to hear it coming from a team that Ball might be willing to work out for, though. In the end, it’s likely irrelevant — Ball is widely expected to go to the Los Angeles Lakers at No. 2 overall, a pick ahead of Philadelphia’s.
H/T CBS Sports
The Philadelphia 76ers hired Jerry Colangelo as chairman of basketball operations on Monday, a move that raised eyebrows as the most futile franchise of recent years could be changing their way of thinking.
However, the Sixers were reportedly pressured into the hiring by Adam Silver and NBA higher-ups, on behalf of the other league owners.
Sources told ESPN’s Brian Windhorst on Monday night that Adam Silver was vital in forging the connection between Colangelo and Sixers owner Joshua Harris. It came at the behest of other league owners, who were dismayed that one of the league’s largest markets was, for all intents and purposes, engaging in a long-term tanking project and hurting revenue sharing. The Sixers plan under general manager Sam Hinkie has been controversial to say the least.
While the Sixers are saying that things won’t change, outsiders believe Colangelo will have significant sway within the team’s front office.
“Jerry is not someone who just comes in and gives advice on something he’s invested in,” one executive who has a history with Colangelo told ESPN. “I don’t see him as being just one voice in a collaborative process.”
“This is most certainly a wide-ranging deal,” another executive said. “Jerry is famous for being aggressive and getting perks, money and power in his deals.”
It’s hard to see this as anything but a demotion for Hinkie, and a change in philosophy for the 76ers. It’s no surprise that the rest of the league wasn’t thrilled with how they were choosing to do business previously.
Team USA Basketball’s final roster has been set for the London Olympics, and Mike Krzyzewski and company will be bringing only one center along with them. With multiple injuries to big men like Dwight Howard, LaMarcus Aldridge, Chris Bosh and Anthony Davis, we wondered if someone like DeMarcus Cousins might have a shot at making a team that is looking thin up front. Cousins felt as though he would be a lock for the team if he made the Select Team, but he wound up being wrong. USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo explained why on Saturday.
“He needs to mature as a person (and) as a player if he’s going to have an outstanding NBA career,” Colangelo said according to USA TODAY. “Before there’s discussion about him being part of our program, he has a lot of building to do. … He has a lot of growing up to do.”
Cousins has always had a reputation of having an attitude issue, but he seemed to be having more fun in Sacramento this year. Apparently he has not done enough to prove to Colangelo that he has matured. Krzyzewski praised Cousins more when asked about the decision to leave him off the team, but you have to assume he agrees at least somewhat with Colangelo’s assessment. The fact that the only center Team USA is taking with them to London is Tyson Chandler says a lot about the coaching staff’s opinion of Cousins.
Photo credit: Richard Rowe-US PRESSWIRE