Nuggets’ Mason Plumlee, Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski reunite in Team USA camp
Denver Nuggets center Mason Plumlee reunited with his former college coach, Duke’s legendary Mike Krzyzewski, who coached Team USA from 2005-16 during a revival of the program’s international dominance. Plumlee was glad to see his longtime friend, noting his relationship with Coach K goes beyond the four seasons he played for the Blue Devils.
“I think it shows that he loves his guys. It’s not just a ‘go play for Duke and get what you can from the school or whatever,’” Plumlee told Alex Labidou of Nuggets.com. “It’s a true relationship and it extends past your one, two, three or four years [at the school].”
Plumlee and Krzyzewski have been in touch since the former was drafted with the No. 22 overall pick by the Brooklyn Nets in 2013.
“We talk [regularly]. We spoke before the playoffs and talk each summer — we have a great relationship,” Plumlee explained. “He’s just somebody who is in your corner once you go to the University. I had a great four years with him and we still talk.”
The former Blue Devil said Krzyzewski’s visit was important for new head coach Gregg Popovich, as he can help the NBA coach with a few tips and tricks he learned from his tenure with USA Basketball.
“It’s great to have him [here],” said Plumlee. “I was telling the other guys [on Team USA], it’s good for him and Popovich because there’s no one that’s done it before [aside from Coach K] — trying to be a head coach of bringing a group of guys together in a month. I think they have a good friendship and that’s why he came out.”
“[Coach K is] obviously interested in seeing us do well. [He mentioned] some small things [to work on personally] but he just wants to make sure that we follow up on what we’ve done in the past couple of tournaments.”