Kevin Love, Tyson Chandler Against Proposed 23-and-under Rule for Olympics

by July 12, 2012

David Stern’s push to create a rule where no NBA player over the age of the 23 can represent the USA in the Olympics — to say nothing of the World Cup of Basketball proposal — is a very unpopular idea among current members of Team USA. Reports Sheridan Hoops: “Nitpickers would point out that making the Olympics worse in order to make the world championship better is a curious strategy. But, then again, the NBA could run a World Cup and benefit financially. and when sports is driven by greed rather than what is best for the sport or its fans, anything is possible. Count Jerry Colangelo, managing director of the U.S. national team, as one opposed to the change. Colangelo said he has had a discussion with Stern and told him to step carefully. ‘Before any final decision is made, it’s important that all the people understand what the ramifications are – to the current group of players, to the future group of players – what really are the limitations as a result?’ Colangelo said. ‘I think that discussion should be a long, thorough discussion before anyone goes off half cocked. That’s my opinion and I shared that with David.’ If Stern’s plan was currently in effect, the U.S. team would not have Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Tyson Chandler, Deron Williams, Chris Paul or Andre Iguodala on the roster. ‘There should not be an age limit for the Olympics,’ said Chandler, who pointed out that swimmer Dara Torres competed in the 2008 Olympics at age 41. ‘We wouldn’t have been able to watch her. And we wouldn’t have been able to watch some of the heroic things we have happened over the years. So I’m very against it.’ Five current Team USA players are 23 or younger – Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Kevin Love, Blake Griffin and James Harden. The rule would not impact them now, but it would in four years. Each of the players has the goal to compete in multiple Olympics. ‘You only have very few chances to represent your country,’ Love said, ‘so I feel that it comes along every four years and I feel like if you have the chance to do it and you want to make that step and you’re good enough to make the team and represent your country, I think you might as well be able to do it, even when you are older.'”