by Marcel Mutoni

OK, so things between Canada and the Montreal-raised baller really aren’t as contentious as the headline implies, but it’s worth noting that Samuel Dalembert is no longer on the national hoops team.

Despite the big man’s absence, the scrappy Canucks were able to gain a crucial victory in their quest to qualify for the Beijing Games.

TSN sheds light on the tiff between Dalembert and Team Canada:

“Everybody that’s here now wants to be here, and wants to be a part of this team, and that’s it,” said Rautins. “Everybody here is playing for each other, and playing for Canada, and if that’s not your agenda, you’re not here.”

“Something like this doesn’t just happen in one game, or overnight,” said Rautins, who wouldn’t say whether Dalembert left on his own or was kicked off the team. “It’s kind of something that’s been brewing a little bit.”

“Listen here, Samuel. And you listen good! We’ve got national pride, plenty of poutine, and cases upon cases of Molson and Labatt. We don’t need you”, Rautins did not necessarily add.

(Thanks to Holly for the tip.)

*** Programming note: While I get re-acquainted with my lovely bed, Lang will be sitting in for me tomorrow and Friday here on The SLAM Wire. Be nice to him. And I’ll see you all on Monday.