The start of the 2012 Summer Olympics in London is exactly one year away.
Since the introduction of the American “Dream Team” in 1992, men’s basketball has been one of the Olympics biggest and most anticipated events. And it figures to be that way again in London.
That is, if NBA players choose to represent their countries.
The Olympics are a huge part of David Stern’s globalization of the sport. And the league has its fingerprints all over USA Basketball, starting with managing director and former majority Phoenix Suns owner Jerry Colangelo running the show.
But if the lockout stretches through at least one season through the early summer next season, it’s extremely doubtful that the players would give in and join up with their national teams.
This promises to be perhaps the United States’ best team since the original “Dream Team” in 1992. Kobe Bryant has committed, eager to match Michael Jordan for his second gold medal. The United States has a deep collection of transcendent young talent like Kevin Durant and Derrick Rose along with emerging superstar players like LeBron James and Dwyane Wade.
Other countries look similarly stacked. The Spain team still has the Gasol brothers, but could also add international icon Ricky Rubio and Serge Ibaka. The Argentinians are stacked with veterans who helped them win in 2004, including Manu Ginobili and Fabricio Oberto. France will have Tony Parker along with Joakim Noah and Boris Diaw
But Yahoo.com columnist Adrian Wojnarowski doubts we’ll see any NBA players if the .
It’s just another part of the equation as owners and players sit down next month to settle their differences when negotiations continue.
No doubt the executives at 30 Rock for NBC-TV have the fingers crossed for an eventual resolution, too.
Because there’s only so much synchronized swimming, field hockey and dressage they can force feed to the American public in their search for ratings.