Gregg Popovich, Jerry Colangelo still committed to Team USA after Olympics postponement
In light of ongoing concerns surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, the IOC (International Olympic Committee) announced on Tuesday morning that it would be postponing the 2020 Tokyo Olympics to a date in 2021. Despite this fact, Gregg Popovich and Jerry Colangelo are staying committed to leading Team USA.
To safeguard the health of the athletes and everyone involved in the Tokyo 2020 Games.
The Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games will now take place no later than summer 2021.
— #Tokyo2020 (@Tokyo2020) March 24, 2020
There was some speculation as to whether or not Popovich and Colangelo would remain with Team USA through this postponement, but it sounds like they are still devoted to the cause.
“The commitments everyone made for 2020 are still there; we’re all-in and we’re committed,” Colangelo said, via ESPN. “It’s important to deal with the unknowns and this virus. This too shall pass, and we’ll be back for everyone’s well-being.”
Earlier this season, Colangelo and Popovich announced a 44-man preliminary roster for Team USA. Among the names on this list of NBA greats are stars like LeBron James, Stephen Curry, Kawhi Leonard, James Harden and Kevin Durant.
Postponing the Tokyo Olympics could cause a few issues, as Adrian Wojnarowski notes in his report for ESPN. Prior to the postponement, Team USA training was scheduled to begin July 4, with the Olympics starting July 24.
“We will follow the leader. We have to wait to see how everything is laid out and we’ll make the adjustment,” Colangelo told ESPN. “Our players are NBA players first, let’s face that.”
Team USA also had several exhibition games planned, including those in Las Vegas, San Francisco and Shanghai. All of those matchups will be postponed as well.
“Changing the window for the NBA is easier said than done. There’s a lot of logistics and contracts to deal with,” Colangelo added. “Same for the Olympics. You have to assume it will be around the same dates.”
The NBA decided to suspend the 2019-20 season last week after several players tested positive for COVID-19. Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert became the first confirmed case in the league last week. His teammate, Donovan Mitchell, was diagnosed shortly after. Four Brooklyn Nets players have since been added to the list of confirmed cases, including Durant.
At this point, it’s not clear when this season might resume. Some, including Mavs owner Mark Cuban, have speculated that games could be played all the way into July (or even August), though nothing is confirmed at this point.
These are unprecedented times in the sporting world, with games and events canceled or suspended around the globe. In the end, the IOC made the right decision in postponing the 2020 Olympics.