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HomeLatestInterview: U.S. basketball now not sole dominant group, says Kerr

Interview: U.S. basketball now not sole dominant group, says Kerr

by Cao Yibo, Wang Jingyu, Yang Yunqi

MANILA, Sept. 2 (Xinhua) — Following an all-winning Group C journey on the 2023 FIBA Basketball World Cup, the United States group had its gentle coaching session previous to the group part second-round conflict with Montenegro.

Familiar faces have been noticed on the courtroom comparable to NBA champion coaches Erik Spoelstra and Tyronn Lue, Gonzaga’s Mark Few, Grant Hill because the group’s managing director and director of scouting Jeff Van Gundy.

After coaching within the fitness center at Shangri-La The Fort in Manila, in an unique interview with Xinhua, head coach Steve Kerr admitted that the U.S. basketball was now not at its sole proprietorship however nonetheless top-of-the-line groups worldwide.

The U.S. dispatched a younger squad with a median age of lower than 25 years previous to Manila, a lot youthful in comparison with defending champion Spain’s 28 and different title contenders comparable to Canada and Serbia’s round 27.

To choose a bunch of energetic younger guys, Kerr aimed toward the long run: “We wanted to get a really talented young team for the future of USA basketball, these are all the next guys.”

“When you think of Jalen Brunson, Anthony Edwards, Tyrese Haliburton and Paolo Banchero, these guys are all gonna be All-Stars for most of their careers. So, they are coming, and they are great players right now, too.” Kerr commented, including “But we wanted to bring a team that was very competitive and with that had a lot of energy, I really wanted to be here, and all 12 of these guys really wanted to come.”

Took the pointer in December 2021, Kerr will coach the U.S. nationwide group via 2024, overlaying the 2023 FIBA World Cup, the Paris Olympic Games and all nationwide group coaching camps. Now the tune has been set.

The group cruised previous New Zealand, Greece and Jordan within the group part with an accrued level distinction of 103, and Kerr attributed the victories to group efforts.

“We’ve been really solid. I think the main thing is they’ve come together quickly,” Kerr famous. “They’re playing excellent defense, and the ball is really moving. We purposely built a team that could pass, because the more you pass, the better your chemistry and your energy [will be].”

The U.S. basketball holds an total document of 132 wins and 29 losses coming into the 2023 version of the championship, lifting the trophy 5 instances. While, within the newest one held in China in 2019, the bitter seventh place end was nonetheless remembered by Kerr, who was the assistant coach apart Gregg Popovich.

“Spain is the No. 1 team in FIBA, and we’re No. 2,” Kerr mentioned, explaining “So we are no longer as dominant as we were, but we are still one of the best teams.”

“We still have the most talent, the biggest well of talents that we can go to pull different players from. But we know the rest of the world is very talented and very good, and FIBA is not a sure thing for us.”

The match co-hosted by the Phillipines, Indonesia and Japan additionally has seen splendid performances by naturalized gamers comparable to Carlik Jones, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and Jordan Clarkson, who’re all present or former NBA gamers with twin residents holding American passports.

While that did not trouble Kerr. “It doesn’t bother me when we see other American players playing for other countries. I think it makes the FIBA competition tougher, and more competitive. It’s great opportunities for our American players who weren’t able to play for us. For them to play in FIBA, we like that, they get those opportunities too,” Kerr said.

The beneficiant speech would not point out the U.S. basketball prioritizes the Olympics over than FIBA World Cup, as Kerr dismissed the considerations with “A lot more people in America watch the Olympics than watch the World Cup of basketball, but for USA basketball, we are taking FIBA World Cup very seriously.”

“We want to win this championship so badly. I want to win it for the players. It’s an amazing group of players. They’re so committed and so together, they have great chemistry, and they are so unselfish. This would mean the world to us if we can win.”

The Golden State Warriors head coach additionally gave his prediction of basketball sooner or later, whereas akin to his facet’s taking part in model in NBA as extra 3-pointers, quicker in velocity and tempo.

“World basketball is still big and physical, FIBA basketball is more physical than the NBA. But I do believe that all of FIBA eventually will be playing more 3-point shooters, more speed, more pace, and not as much power basketball inside,” Kerr mentioned.

Kerr additionally addressed the unbalanced World Cup, as all Asian and African groups failed to succeed in the ultimate 16.

“The African [or Asian] teams started playing [basketball] much later in their countries. Teams in Serbia, throughout Europe, and Lithuania, have been playing basketball for 100 years. I lived in Egypt when I was 15 years old, nobody played basketball, they just started playing basketball last 20 years, so they’re behind. It takes a long time to build up a strength in a sport in a country if you haven’t been playing for a long time.” (Lin Deren, Xia Liang and Wei Hua additionally contributed to this text)