Popovich to coach Team USA in 2017
Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich will take over for Mike Kryzewski as the head coach for Team USA basketball after the 2016 Olympics. Coach K has been in charge for ten years and has done an amazing job, returning USA to the top of Olympic basketball with two gold medals and a record of 75-1. He was chosen by Jerry Colangelo, who had taken over as chairman of USA basketball in 2005. Now Colangelo has chosen an NBA coach, and Popovich was his first choice.
This is not a surprise decision as Popovich as won five NBA titles with the Spurs, and was considered for the job back in 2005. I think with his experience in coaching many international players in San Antonio, he has a certain X factor that other coaches may not have. NBA commissioner Adam Silver was happy with the decision. The team will be able to transition from one of if not the best college basketball coach in history, to one of the best professional basketball coaches in history. Popovich will start with the 2017 training camp in preparation for the 2019 Basketball World Cup, and the 2020 Olympics assuming they qualify (which they should).
Being a Suns fan, I am no stranger to Coach Popovich and the San Antonio Spurs. While some of the playoff series’ between those two teams had their fair share of controversy, I have always respected Gregg Popovich as a coach and a person. He has always been a classy guy and always showed respect to his counterparts even in total domination. Several of the Spurs core players will be long retired by the time Pop gets to coach in the Olympics. He may even be retired from NBA coaching by then as well. I believe the 2020 games will be his final stamp on his basketball legacy, and he should cement it with another gold medal for Team USA.
Kevin McQuade covers the NBA for MFST, you can follow him on Twitter @kmcquade9.