View Full Version : Article:Artest: Why was I left out?

08-23-2004, 10:46 PM
http://www.nynewsday.com/sports/olympics/ny-spoartest0824,0,5180061,print.story?coll=ny-sports-olympics-headlines]Artest: Why was I left out?

August 24, 2004

Ron Artest was not so bold as to say things would be different if he were in Greece, just that he'd love to be there.

He's more than a little irritated that no one asked him to be.

"I was the [NBA] Defensive Player of the Year and didn't get an invite," the Pacers forward said. "It's frustrating not to have gotten a phone call."

Artest spoke yesterday at Park Avenue Country Club in Manhattan, promoting the 12th annual All-Star Classic, which benefits Wheelchair Charities. The game will be played Sept. 15 at Alumni Hall, where Artest played for St. John's.

Even before the Olympics started, USA Basketball received criticism for its selection process. It produced a team with poor outside shooting, defensive liabilities and a lackadaisical attitude. The 6-7 Artest said he has watched the Olympics on television and can understand why fans have been turned off.

"I think fans are upset because of what they see as a lack of effort," Artest said. "Although I don't think it's that the U.S. isn't playing hard, I think the other teams are playing hard, too."

Perhaps more galling to fans, and to Artest, is the idea that the Olympics have become meaningless to NBA stars and with that, the Dream Team concept has been eviscerated. Shaquille O'Neal, Kobe Bryant and Kevin Garnett all passed on the opportunity to be in the Olympics.

"I was one of the guys who wanted to be there," Artest said. "Look, so many guys turned it down. After all the top guys, there's room for me.

"I don't know what it was. All I know is it's something that only comes along every four years and I would have liked to have been part of it. I'd have been the water boy or the manager or whatever. I wanted to go."

08-23-2004, 10:50 PM
I wish he would have be able to go.

08-23-2004, 10:54 PM
I must say, these Olympics would be MUCH more interesting with Ron Artest on Team USA

Pig Nash
08-23-2004, 10:57 PM
I agree Hicks.

08-23-2004, 11:02 PM
But would LB play him?

08-23-2004, 11:05 PM
im kind of happy he's not going, seeing what happened to Jermaine at the end of the playoffs last year. But if theres any player that would not be affected by the rigors of playing in the Olympics, it would probably be Artest.

But I agree that the olympics would be much more interesting. There is not one player like Artest on that team, and he would bring a whole nother dimension to the team.

08-23-2004, 11:14 PM
But would LB play him?

He'd be a fool not to. Right now Jefferson is the starting 3. You really think he'd be the starting 3 if Ron was there instead of say, Carmelo?

08-23-2004, 11:15 PM
imagine how much better team USA would be if they had Ben Wallace and Ron Artest on team. We would be SOOOOOO much stronger defensivly and would make up for our lack of shooting. I mean why the hell was Lamar Odom invited over artest or wallace?

Pig Nash
08-23-2004, 11:18 PM
well i like odom, but amare shouldn't be on the team, ron or ben should be. or anyone that can shoot.

08-23-2004, 11:19 PM
odom is a good player, but he is no ron artest. I also agree with you on Amare.

08-23-2004, 11:22 PM

Ben Wallace was a total disaster at the world champioships in 2002. You want to talk about a player that would be even worse at the international game than the guys we have now, it's him.

08-23-2004, 11:38 PM
I've read people on various message boards complaining about Ben Wallace not being on the team but he declined his invite after the Finals. Wallace not being on the team was not an oversight by the committee.

ESPN (http://sports.espn.go.com/oly/columns/story?columnist=stein_marc&id=1826438)

And I agree he didn't play very well at the Worlds.

08-23-2004, 11:42 PM
(Okay, that's the second time today my post has been lost. :mad:)

Anyway, as I was saying, I'm glad I'm not the only person who remembers what a bust Wallace was in the WC's. As for Ron, while it would certainly be interesting to see how he'd fit into the team, he wouldn't have been a savior. He would have helped, sure, but I don't see him making a real difference.

And that's nothing against him, it's just there are problems much more fundamental than who's on the team and who isn't.

08-23-2004, 11:52 PM
Artest wasn't invited because he doesn't sell tickets. :(

08-24-2004, 12:29 AM
Artest wasn't invited because of his "loose cannon" reputation on the court. At least when Iverson gets in trouble, its with the police, or skipping practice, or something where the cameras aren't on.

If Ron can go the next four years without embarrassing himself or the league, then he'll be on the 2008 team. I don't recommend holding your breath for that one...

08-24-2004, 12:32 AM
Ben Wallace would be nearly useless in the Olympics. The International teams don't go inside and we're already dominating rebounding.

Not sure Ron would help much - the Lit's really ran players off screens and used the pick-and-roll a lot. Ron's OK at that but his best thing his going eyeball-to-eyeball with someone. The Euros don't play that way.

Besides, there are those pesky international incidents to worry about ...

08-24-2004, 01:48 AM
Reggie would be good for this team...

08-24-2004, 02:14 AM
Reggie would have dominated international bball, with how much they run screens and shoot threes.

08-24-2004, 02:48 AM
Well, Reggie's D has diminished greatly, and he's probably lost his handle, but even at 50 (or whatever he is now) the guy could probably oushoot anybody at the Olympics. Plus he's played for Larry Brown a time or two.

08-24-2004, 05:29 AM
The reason I am a Pacers fan now was Reggie's performance in the Olympics (96?) in the game vs Australia. The Boomers hanging close to Team USA to be down 5 at the half, then Reggie came out and nailed 3s from all over the court. You could tell it sure was the kiddy line for him.

Despite the possibility of injury I would have loved to see Reggie playing for Team USA in Athens. I think his veteran leadership and shooting ability would have been a big bonus for this current team.

08-24-2004, 06:38 AM
Reggie would have dominated international bball, with how much they run screens and shoot threes.


<I am of course refering to the Stern pix>

08-24-2004, 08:01 AM
I agree on the Ben Wallace point. He gets called for a lot more fouls in the international game as they don't let you hand check (or forearm check as it is now) and his physicality isn't rewarded in international rules. I mean, Pau Gasol is dominating the Olympics. Perhaps its better that he did decline the invite, I mean if the selection commitee isn't paying attention to who works in the international game then the players themselves need to.

As for Ron, I can understand that he should have been asked (he's better than a majority on the team, especially since half the team plays his position, he's got to be one of the 6 best 3s in the league). But again his physical play doesn't get rewarded in that rule set. (I don't see why LB wouldn't play him though, especially when D is such a priority with him and lacking at times with the current team.)

08-24-2004, 08:33 AM
I meant Reggie back in his prime, btw.

08-24-2004, 10:24 AM
Ben Wallace and Ron Artest don't address this teams primary weakness - outside shooting.

08-24-2004, 12:52 PM
It should be pointed out that Brown reportedly pushed hard for Reggie. I know Reggie addressed it (either on Dennis Miller or Kilborn) and said he was getting too old and he couldn't justify doing it after getting hurt the last time.

Reggie is a perfect player for international ball, always has been. That's why I've been so perturbed with Rip for staying home, because he's such a similar player.