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Basketball age limit 'unlikely' for 2016 Olympics


Basketball age limit 'unlikely' for 2016 Olympics

Before these Olympic games have concluded, we may have learned that David Stern's hopes of a 23-and-under format for the 2016 games have already been dashed -- and in turn, John Wall's chances of playing for Gold remain alive.From SI.com's basketball writer Ian Thomsen:"These Olympics are not expected to bring an immediate end to the "Dream Team'' era of men's basketball, a source told SI.com on Thursday.

"The NBA's interest in pursuing an age ceiling for Olympic basketball is "unlikely'' to be instituted in time for the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro, according to the source, who has direct knowledge of the talks involving the International Olympic Committee and FIBA, the international ruling body for basketball."Stern, with the backing of at least some NBA owners, desires the age change so as to protect his top players, but also to boostthe newly labeled FIBA World Cup. If LeBron James, Kevin Durant and others are no longer in the Olympics, thenon-Olympic four-year event and one withoutage restriction would then be promoted as thepremier basketball event from a talent standpoint. Think World Cup soccer compared Olympic soccer (though I'm guessing most of you already made the connection.).Wall could have been in the mix for a spot in 2012 if the 23-and-under format was the rule. Should the age-limit angle be shelved for now, then Wall, part of the Select team that practicedagainst this edition of Olympians,is back in the mix for 2016. Of course, while getting into the Olympic system certainly cannot hurt his chances, it's also not a lock makes the Rio squad. As I wrote earlier this year, Chris Paul and Deron Williams will both be over 30 by the time 2016 rolls around. That hardly means the pair won't be at an All-Star level, but the combination of wear-and-tear plus the been there, done that aspect could have the passers passing. Russell Westbrook should still be in his prime. As for those not in London, Derrick Rose might want his chance at gold after missing out this time due to injury. Rajon Rondo should still be rocking and rolling and what not. Then you have the next waves of point guards including Wall, Kyrie Irving, Brandon Jennings, Damian Lillard, Kendall Marshall and plus four years worth of college players entering the pro ranks. If he plays up to his draft slot, Wizards rookie off-guard Bradley Beal should also be the backcourt discussion.

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Wizards Tipoff podcast: Fallout from the Kawhi/DeRozan trade; Kevin Love questions

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Wizards Tipoff podcast: Fallout from the Kawhi/DeRozan trade; Kevin Love questions

On the latest episode of the Wizards Tipoff podcast presented by Greenberg and Bederman, Chase Hugheswas joined by Nick Ashooh to break down the fallout from the trade involving Kawhi Leonard and DeMar DeRozan.

They looked at what it means for the Wizards and the East, as well as the Lakers and LeBron. Plus, they took fan questions, many of which centered on Kevin Love and the possibility of a trade to Washington.

You can listen to the episode right here:

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Jeff Green hopes NBA Finals experience with Cavs can rub off on Wizards

Jeff Green hopes NBA Finals experience with Cavs can rub off on Wizards

Jeff Green's basketball résumé got a significant boost this spring and summer as his Cleveland Cavaliers marched all the way to the NBA Finals before they were swept by the Golden State Warriors. It was Green's first time going past the second round of the playoffs and the experience, he says, was invaluable.

Green has come about as close to winning a championship without actually winning one and he certainly hopes to get back in that position. Green believes his new team, the Washington Wizards, have the tools to make a deep playoff run and it's one of the reasons why he signed a free agent deal to join them.

"Being there last year myself with Cleveland, I know it takes a lot. It takes a lot of pieces. I feel like this team has them," he said. "We can get back to that point. When I got the call, I felt like it was the best opportunity for myself to get there."

The Wizards' franchise has not been past the second round of the playoffs since 1979, when they were known as the Bullets. That was before anyone on their roster was born.

But Green pointed to the open Eastern Conference and the talent on the roster as reasons to believe they can accomplish some things that they haven't in decades. They may be capable, but putting it all together is easier said than done.

Green hopes to be one of the glue guys necessary for the Wizards to reach their potential, in part by sharing the lessons he learned.

"Never take it for granted. There are a lot of greats that have never been there," he said. "Getting to the Finals and being part of that was beyond amazing. With the experience and seeing what it took, I can bring that here and get everybody on the same page of knowing what it takes and the sacrifices that you have to do to get to that point."

Green over and over mentioned how it takes a collective effort to go to the conference finals and beyond, but he did show some self-awareness and a sense of humor about his own experience in Cleveland. All teams are different and the one he just left was a unique situation.

"You can’t get there individually. I mean, you can, we did last year. I mean, LeBron [James] carried us all the way there," he joked. "But there’s only one LeBron, but to get there you have to have team unity. You all have to be on the same page and sacrifice to make sure you’re doing what it takes to get the team there. I think that’s the biggest key. It’s not an individual thing… unless you’re LeBron."

If the Wizards are to reach their goals and go to the conference finals or the NBA Finals, they will have to do it differently than the Cavaliers did. They do not have a player on the level of James who can do much of it by himself. But Green said the process of imparting his wisdom has already started.

"I talked to John [Wall]," Green said. "Knowing that he wants to get to the Finals, I was just picking his brain and what he thinks is needed to get there. And me sharing my experience of getting to the Finals and what it takes."

The Wizards have reached a point as an organization where they have the urgency to reach new heights. Green believes he can help them get there.

Listen to our full interview with Jeff Green on the Wizards Tipoff Podcast: