Ice Cube is a man with a lot of opinions. A lot of these opinions are strongly worded, but they never come from a place of ignorance. For example, he struggles to understand why Team USA didn't consider recruiting the player suiting up for BIG3 teams.
In a no-holds-barred interview with LA Times' Arash Markazi, the rapper-turned-business-mogul laid down the law when it comes to Los Angeles teams and other sports-related matters. His take on Team USA snubbing his players was especially seething.
“It would be irresponsible for USA Basketball not to look at our guys to represent the United States,” Cube said. “We have some of the best players to ever play the game and they’re showing what they can do in this three-on-three half-court setting. They should be given a shot but I don’t know if they will. There’s a lot of politics involved there with FIBA and they’re not happy with what we’re doing, but I think they should be given a chance.”
Some see the BIG3 as a retirement league for the game's old greats who don't have the athleticism to keep up with the game's pace at the highest level. Some may even see it as a recreational league meant to fill the basketball void before the real games start in October.
However, the fact that Joe Johnson is getting workouts from title contenders is a testament to the level of basketball being played. Ice Cube feels justified that he didn't bother mixing the relatively young USA delegation with experienced vets who still have the moves to play.
Of course, it's too late for Gregg Popovich to include a BIG3 player to his 12-man roster. But it is worth considering the next time NBA stars decide to ignore a big international tournament.