Olympics Day 4 - Basketball

Pau Gasol confirms he won’t play for Spanish national team at Eurobasket this summer


After undergoing a procedure in both knees just last week, and with an announced recovery time of three months before he could return to basketball-related activities, most weren’t expecting Pau Gasol to be ready in time to join the Spanish national team for Eurobasket this summer.

On Tuesday, Gasol confirmed it by posting an open letter to fans on his website.

Here it is in its entirety, just the way it was published:

“To all the basketball fans: In order to avoid future problems, on May 9 I underwent a simple procedure to debride degenerated tissue of the patellar tendons of my knees non-surgically.

After valuing the period of the rehabilitation, which I have already initiated, with my medical team of confidence, I sadly confirm that I won’t play in the next European Championship of Slovenia despite I wished it.

My priority aim is to recover myself thinking in the next season and to be ready, if I’m asked to, for the next challenge with the national team, the World Cup of Spain 2014.

Wishing the best for the Team in Slovenia”,

Pau Gasol

Sounds like someone may have translated that from Spanish to English and posted it, but you get the idea.

Gasol has had a long and successful history in playing for Spain in international competition, most recently helping them to a silver medal in the 2012 Olympics.

Injuries limited Gasol to playing just 49 regular season games for the Lakers, and his scoring, rebounding, shooting percentage, and minutes played were all significantly below his career averages.

Eurobasket 2013 is scheduled to take place in Slovenia from September 4th through the 22nd.

LeBron says “get it done” message was for both Cavaliers, Thompson

LeBron James
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Everything LeBron James does and says gets magnified and scrutinized.

So when he put out this photo on Instagram standing shoulder-to-shoulder with Tristan Thompson and the caption “get it done” it seemed a message to the Cavaliers.

Get it done!!!! Straight up. #MissMyBrother @realtristan13

A photo posted by LeBron James (@kingjames) on

LeBron clarified that on Sunday, saying this has become a distraction, and the message was for both sides to bend, as reported by Dave McMenamin of ESPN and Chris Haynes of the Plain Dealer.

When Thompson didn’t sign the qualifying offer he surrendered a lot of leverage, the Cavaliers don’t have to raise their five-year, $80 million offer — but reportedly they still would, a little. Thompson and his agent Rich Paul have pushed for a max contract, but that’s not happening.

At some point, the two sides will come to an agreement. For the Cavaliers, this is a distraction, their star is unhappy with that, and ultimately if they are going to make a title run they need the energy and rebounding Thompson brings (even if it is just off the bench). For Thompson, he can’t make up a year of lost salary, he has to come in and start getting paid at some point.

The two sides will get it done. Eventually. Likely before the season tips off.

China basketball qualifies for 2016 Olympics

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China has secured the ninth and final Olympic men’s basketball berth awarded this year.

China earned the bid to the 2016 Rio Games with a 78-67 win over the Philippines. 2016 first-round draft prospect Qi Zhou had 16 points and 14 rebounds, setting up the Olympics to be his big introduction to American fans.

Former NBA player Yi Jianlian won tournament MVP by averaging 16.7 points, 8.8 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 1.2 blocks per game.

This will be China’s ninth straight Olympic appearance.

The Philippines, who got 17 points from Andray Blatche in the final, will still go to an Olympic Qualifying Tournament next summer with a chance to reach Rio.