Money talks, Dream Team walks: NBA wants its stars out of the Olympics
You can take a wild guess why the NBA wants to do this. HINT: It involves 30 billionaires who own professional basketball franchises, and their steadfast belief that they are not making enough money here.
According to a Yahoo! Sports report, the NBA would like to eliminate the Dream Team model and hold it's own international basketball tournament. This year will be the last time the NBA allows its top stars to play in the Olympics. Instead, they would hold a "World Cup of Basketball" that would share revenue between the International Basketball Federation and the NBA owners.
"The owners would be a lot more comfortable letting star players play internationally if they’re sharing in the revenue," an anonymous source told Yahoo! Sports.
Currently, the International Olympic Committee gets the lion's share of the revenue created by Olympics events.
Under the new plan, there would still be a U.S. Men's Basketball team at the Olympics. But this would be an "Under 23" team, meaning that only players age 23 and younger would be able to participate. With the proposed 20 years of age minimum for entering the NBA, this means that the Olympic team would likely be comprised primarily of college players.
Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban is vocally in favor of taking the basketball stars out of the Olympics and starting a separate, for-profit tournament. "The question is: Why would we partner with a current tournament rather than start our own?", Cuban told Yahoo! Sports.
You gotta hand it to Cubes. He doesn't play anonymous when he talks to reporters. He comes right out and says whatever he thinks, and puts his name with it -- no matter how selfish and arrogant the sentiment he's expressing.
"If done correctly," Cuban continued, "it can be NBA-owned and operated and have the potential to be just as large as the World Cup of soccer. That is a product, in my opinion, we want to own, not share."
The Dream Team concept was first introduced at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. They've won the gold medal at every Olympics since, with the exception of a bronze medal finish at the 2004 Olympics in Athens.