Kerr

“No” was the first word that came out of Steve Kerr’s mouth when he was asked by Joe Vardon of The Athletic about whether he would still take on the role of head coach of Team USA following the Paris Olympics.

Steadfast in his decision, Kerr intends to emulate the footsteps of his predecessor, Gregg Popovich, who stepped down as head coach of the Olympic team after one World Cup appearance and one Olympic appearance. He also said that this was perhaps the proper order for things to operate; a coach ought to be granted just one cycle before moving on.

Via The Athletic: “To me, it’s a two-year; it’s a cycle. Pop coached a World Cup and the Olympics, now it’s my turn to pass the baton. I think that’s kind of how it should be. Frankly, it’s a huge commitment too. I guess I think it was different the last go-around with Coach K (Mike Krzyzewski) and Jerry (Colangelo), when they were really establishing this culture and this system where guys had to commit for a couple years. Made sense for Coach K to stay on. But I think where we are now, one cycle and you move on.”

According to multiple sources, there’s a possibility that the baton would be passed on to LA Clippers coach Tyronn Lue, Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, and Gonzaga men’s basketball coach Mark Few.

So, who’s on the Olympic roster?

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Ever since their abysmal fourth-place showing at the FIBA World Cup last September, several big names in the league have come forth to express their desire to play for the Olympics next year, such as LeBron James, Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Jayson Tatum, Devin Booker, and Joel Embiid.

And when asked about this matter, Kerr replied, “You want everybody excited about the prospect (of playing for Team USA); that’s the first sign of, hey, we’re taking this really seriously. A lot of guys are dying to play. Obviously, Grant has to lead the way in terms of building our strategy, and we haven’t made any decisions,” Kerr continued.

The head coach also added that the process of selecting just twelve players from the list of individuals who are willing to compete on the international stage is painful.

“It’s highly likely that guys who want to play may not be … whether it’s established guys or guys who have been with us and guys who just played and played really well this last go-around, no matter how you slice it, you can only take 12, so it’s very, very difficult, and it’s a painful process because, you know, you get really attached to guys.”

“This last group was so wonderful. In a lot of ways, I wanted to win the gold and just run it back,” he added.

With the Paris Games scheduled to begin on July 26, 2022, and end on August 11, 2022, there are still nine months left to select the final 12 players for the United States Olympic team.

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