Indiana Pacers v Miami Heat - Game Five

Roy Hibbert trying to find a workaround to join USA Basketball


Roy Hibbert was absent from this summer’s USA Basketball mini-camp in Las Vegas, but only because he isn’t eligible to play.

Hibbert has suited up for Jamaica in the past, making the mutual desire for him to be a part of team USA going forward difficult, at best.

But Hibbert seems intent on getting the situation figured out, and is in the process of doing everything he can to pave the way for him to be a part of USA Basketball in the future.

From Scott Agness of

Pacers center Roy Hibbert wants to be part of the USA Basketball team and he said this week that international lawyers and his agent are in the process of trying to make that happen. Hibbert previously played a short stint with Team Jamaica after he was passed over and that has thus far made him ineligible.

“I wanted to play in the Olympics and then they invited some other guys from my draft class to be centers,” Hibbert explained. “I thought I could have been in that group. If I had gotten invited, I wouldn’t have played for Team Jamaica. You live and you learn. If I don’t play for Team USA ever again, I’ll enjoy my summers and bulk up like I did this summer.”

Hibbert is under the impression that Team USA has to make an inquiry to FIBA, the International Basketball Federation. He then has to be let go from Team Jamaica in order to join Team USA. Simply, it’s a lot of red tape, USA Basketball has to determine whether it’s worth the effort and Jamaica has to be understanding.

It’s complicated, but not impossible. Hibbert’s father is from Jamaica, but the Pacers’ big man is in fact an American with dual citizenship.

The international game seems to favor slashers and shooters over post players, but Team USA has plenty of those. Adding a player like Hibbert to the frontcourt rotation would address the only real weakness on the roster.

Gordon Hayward goes behind Jordan Clarkson’s back with dribble

Gordon Hayward, Nick Young
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Utah’s Gordon Hayward abused the Lakers’ Jordan Clarkson on this play.

First, Hayward reads and steals Clarkson’s poor feed into the post intended for Kobe Bryant, then going up the sideline he takes his dribble behind Clarkson’s back to keep going. It all ends in a Rudy Gobert dunk.

Three quick takeaways here:

1) Gordon Hayward is a lot better than many fans realize. He can lead this team.

2) It’s still all about the development with Clarkson, and that’s going to mean some hard lessons.

3) Hayward may have the best hair in the NBA, even if it’s going a bit Macklemore.

(Hat tip reddit)

Could Tristan Thompson’s holdout last months? Windhorst says yes.

2015 NBA Finals - Game Five
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VIZZINI: “So, it is down to you. And it is down to me.”
MAN IN BLACK nods and comes nearer…
MAN IN BLACK: “Perhaps an arrangement can be reached.”
VIZZINI: “There will be no arrangement…”
MAN IN BLACK: “But if there can be no arrangement, then we are at an impasse.”

That farcical scene from The Princess Bride pretty much sums up where we are with the Tristan Thompson holdout with the Cleveland Cavaliers, minus the Iocane powder. (Although that scene was a battle of wits in the movie and this process seems to lack much wit.) The Cavaliers have put a five-year, $80 million offer on the table. Thompson wants a max deal (or at least a more than has been offered), but he also doesn’t want to play for the qualifying offer and didn’t sign it. LeBron James just wants the two sides just to get it done.

Brian Windhorst of ESPN thinks LeBron could be very disappointed.

Windhorst was on the Zach Lowe podcast at Grantland (which you should be listening to anyway) and had this to say about the Thompson holdout:

“I actually believe it will probably go months. This will go well into the regular season.”

Windhorst compared it to a similar situation back in 2007 with Anderson Varejao, which eventually only broke because the then Charlotte Bobcats signed Varejao to an offer sheet. Thompson is a restricted free agent, meaning the Cavaliers can match any offer, but only Portland and Philadelphia have the cap space right now to offer him a max contract. Neither team has shown any interest in doing so.

And so we wait. And we may be waiting a while.