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Will The Purple Heart Of Kobe Bryant Ride Off Into The Rio Sunset With Olympic Gold?

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Will The Purple Heart Of Kobe Bryant Ride Off Into The Rio Sunset With Olympic Gold?

After a carnival of a court career will Kobe Bryant run with Team USA in Brazil for a victory lap as an Olympian?

This looks to be the Black Mamba’s last year in purple and gold, but that doesn’t mean the Laker legend won’t spend his last Summer looking for more basketball gold in Rio for the 2016 Olympic Games.

Or “riding off into the sunset” with the Dream Team for a podium place as he reportedly told Jerry Colangelo for the perfect Madris Gras. But Kobe doesn’t want to take it easy with this celebration. It’s going to be all work for this play as Kobe wants to “earn his spot” like the true competitive professional he is.

But can you imagine him sitting on the end of the bench?

If he does he could accept another pivotal, albeit reduced role. Just like when this franchise, All-Star player went into the kennel of the 2012 Olympics as a defensive doberman for his dogs. This time he could go all Coach Kobe again like the times he’s been injured. As well as making the most of meagre but meaningful minutes, heating up like a microwave as a spark plug off the bench in more ways than one.

Still, lets not get ahead of ourselves. This is all so long as Kobe is healthy all 82 games plus season long for the Los Angeles Lakers. The legend has been injury riddled the past couple of campaigns and this year will bid to run away with the youngsters of this Laker team all the way to the promised land that has been a lie to them for around a half decade now. Will guards like sophomore Jordan Clarkson and number 2 pick D’Angelo Russell leave his ankles broke? Or will the seasoned legend slow the game down with the post of defensive veteran Roy Hibbert and the returning from season crippling injury Julius Randle. Either or with this Shooting Guard moving to the three or even the Power Forward position, all this burn will take it’s toll.

Must Read:  Welcome To 'Kobeland' Where Both Numbers 8 & 24 Have A Home

Still here’s a guy that’s hinted that this could very well be his last Laker season, but not the one where he retires. Looking to travel the world and play in the European game he grew up with when his dad Joe ‘Jellybean’ Bryant played on that continent. Perhaps a return to Italy will ferment for Vino. But will this be via a stop over in South America?

We sure hope so, because Team America will be even more explosive with this generations Jordan, even if guys like Steph Curry, LeBron James and Harden can podium hop bronze and silver for gold all on their own. Still before the purple and gold of number 24 goes up to the rafters of Lakerland it would be fitting to see the top ten suit up in the stars and stripes jersey again. The Hall could always use another medal.

Time for Kobe to shine one last time and keep the flame burning alight. It’s all about the five rings!

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FIBA

Father Of Dragons. Starbury To Coach In China

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Father Of Dragons Starbury To Coach In China
Beijing King...

Remade in China.

Stephon Marbury was one of the biggest NBA all  superstar’s in the early 2000’s. The Coney Island Point Guard product had placement in Fat Joe lyrics and Terror Squad videos. His shirtless, SLAM cover was as ‘Money. Power. Respect’ iconic as Allen Iverson’s ‘Soul On Ice’ best ever classic. And his ‘Showbiz and K.G’ Minnesota Timberwolves one with Kevin Garnett was remade by Kevin Love (K.L.) and Ricky Rubio too (what a dynamic duo both those perfect partnerships could have been more). Then the show-business of Star Marbury had the game of a big, blockbuster trade (before big, blockbuster trades), as the New Jersey Net was switched to the scorching and running Phoenix Suns for some guy named Jason Kidd (and we all know how that turned out). This former Jersey boy came back home as Starbury had the chance to be the king of New York like Carmelo Anthony leading the Knicks from the point. But like rotten Big Apple luck that all mellowed like ‘Melo too and Marbury seemingly made for Manhattan looked to escape from New York like the Statue of Liberty was ‘Cloverfield’ laying in the middle of Fifth Avenue.

It was time the Point God with a New York state of grind switched from the concrete blacktop jungle of New York to a whole new playground. Steph with a shot at redemption took his ball to the Far East. Known for changing the game and breaking down barriers and borders-his discounted sneakers, affordable for all really knew how to kick game with everyone-Starbury’s star turn wasn’t just another NBA flame-out trying to find some burn in another country like still capable stars Steve Francis or Michael Beasley (bring him back Lake Show). He really remade his name there. Possibly having not only a redemptive resurgence, but arguably the better and for sure the more enjoyable part of his career in a closing chapter that saw him soar.

Retiring at 40 in tears and iconic status in China like Chan for all the years he kicked game, Marbury ended his career with 20 points, a step-back dagger three and the win for the Beijing Royal Fighters, otherwise known as the Beijing Fly Dragons that this fighter breathed fire into. As the crowd cheered “Ma Buli MVP,” “Ma Buli, I love you,” and “My Hero,” and even cheerleaders cried as Stephon got his ‘Jerry Maguire’ on telling everyone in attendance that his career in China “completes me.” Getting poetic the biggest Basketball star in China after Yao Ming continued, “At one time I had no place for the blood to go, and you opened up a portal to your hearts for me to flow. You let me live when I was dying; I can’t explain how I feel as I’m crying”.

Must Read:  Canada's U16 Team loses heartbreaking OT semi-final to Argentina at 2013 FIBA Americas U16 Championships

Beautiful…but you had us at the Tom Cruise sports agent reference.

Now the man who was the same huge part of the best ’96 draft class with the likes of Kobe Bryant, Allen Iverson, Ray Allen, Steve Nash and Samaki Walker people has shown he was in a league of his own as a three time CBA champion and six time All Star. His time further East wasn’t a footnote like his season with the storied, legendary Boston Celtics. For him and the nation, it was everything. And now his next chapter reads from the dry erase of hoops history.

Because now these fighting dragons have named Stephon Marbury their new head coach. Imagine that! This Brooklyn born baller is about to rule the world from the same sidelines he closed out his playing days with his hands together in prayer as every camera taking an immortalized shot of a moment for life bowed before him. Now set to lead the likes of impressive former Laker Thomas Robinson (having his own Hollywood moment over there like Michelle Yeoh), this former Duck is about to be even more mighty.

This crazy, rich culture and a former NBA icon is showing you Basketball is bigger than just one border.

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FIBA

Raptors’ Nick Nurse to coach Canada at 2019 FIBA World Cup

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Toronto Raptors Nick Nurse To Coach Canada At 2019 Fiba World Cup

Fresh off leading the Toronto Raptors’ to their first-ever NBA championship – Nick Nurse has been officially named head coach of Canada’s Senior Men’s National (SMNT).

Rocking a fresh suit alongside a red tie and a Canadian pin flag, Nurse expressed gratitude and humbleness “truly honored to be sitting here in this position, I’m really am. Obviously, the last couple of months have been very humbling and really amazing to see the country, the city and everybody get excited about basketball in this country.” opened up Canada’s newest head coach during the press conference.

Nurse’s contract obligations with Team Canada are expected to last through the 2020 summer Olympic games in Tokyo. No salary details were released.

Team Canada is expected to release its full training camp roster before the end of June

“I’m looking forward to working with this talented group of young players, and to seeing what we can do on the competitive global basketball stage. I love the international game.  I also see this as a real chance for me to learn from the world’s best, and for us to represent Canada with pride and distinction.”– expressed Nick Nurse.

Canada Basketball has been searching for a replacement since veteran head coach Jay Triano decided to step aside from the job on March 25, 2019 – as he was asked to re-apply for the position by general manager Rowan Barrett.

“Nick fits our Gold Medal Profile as he is a proven leader with extensive experience coaching FIBA, NBA and other professional leagues around the world.  His coaching pedigree shows his ability to win at some of the highest levels and he has a tremendous understanding of the FIBA game and our Canadian NBA players.  We strongly believe that this unique combination gives our players the best opportunity for success at the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 and the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.” added Rowan Barrett.

Must Read:  2013 FIBA U19 World Championships: Canada vs. USA: Historically a lopsided affair, will it be any different without Andrew Wiggins?

After a long a interview process that further extended due to the Toronto Raptors’ winning their first-ever NBA Championship — Peter Yannopoulos and confirmed on by various sources — that Nick Nurse who will be responsible for leading what is expected to be a star-studded Team Canada and the upcoming 2019 FIBA World Cup.

Gordie Herbert Canada Basketball Associate Head Coach
Gordie Herbert – Canada Basketball Associate Head Coach

Joining Nurse on the sideline will be Gordie Herbert as an associate head coach. Herbert recently left his Head Coach position with German BBL club Fraport Skyliners Frankfurt. Herbert helped guide Canada to two World Cup qualification wins and is a former Toronto Raptors assistant coach (2008-2009).

Herbert is also expected to take over the coaching duties at the 2021 FIBA AmeriCup Qualifiers formerly known as FIBA Americas Championship. The tournament pits together the top teams from the Western Hemisphere and currently scheduled for November.

The rest of the coaching staff will be announced in the coming days. Canada has loaded exhibition schedule and is expected to face tough opposition in the group of death at the 2019 FIBA World cup in China.

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