mobile app bar

“There Was a Standard”: Gilbert Arenas Disapproves of 2024 Olympic Roster Over Selection Criteria

Trikansh Kher

“There Was a Standard”: Gilbert Arenas Disapproves of 2024 Olympic Roster Over Selection Criteria

The squad for the upcoming Olympics of Team USA have officially been declared. The United States will be out for redemption in Paris after the team returned medal-less during last year’s FIBA World Cup. Reacting to the roster announcement, former NBA star Gilbert Arenas took to his show, ‘ Gil’s Arena’ to air his opinion on previous star-studded squads who went for redemption. 

From the very get-go, Arenas let his guests know that he wasn’t a fan of the selections, even though Agent Zero did admit that the team was good enough to win gold. Going in on his reasoning, Arenas said,

“I mean we are going to win gold…When they introduced the dream team, the dream team two, there was a standard for making that team. The standard for making the ’92 team was All-NBA players, that first team out of 12 players, 9 were All-NBA players.” 

View on Website

The Wizards legend even accounted for the remaining roster spots on the ’92 squad. Chalking up Magic’s and Bird’s appearance to ” legacy“, the final spot on the ’92 was mostly redundant, as it was historically taken up by the best college player. Agent Zero further went in on the USAB selection committee, using the 1996 squad as another example of a well-put-together squad,

” 96 team, 12 players, all 12 players were All-NBA players so that means these were the best 15 players in the NBA.” 

The three-time NBA All-Star believes that having a roster full of All-NBA players is the only way to build a contender. And as it many sound, some star playing coming from the bench is something inevitable,

” In the 96 team, if David Robinson went down, Hakeem Olajuwon was on the bench. Shaquille O’Neal was on the bench. They both averaged 27 and 11 that year. They came off the bench. We had superstar power.” 

Another aspect that irked Arenas was Kerr’s impatience with drafting the team. Pointing out earlier traditions, Gilbert Arenas called out the selection committee for ignoring the All-NBA awards.

The reason for Arenas’s emphasis on drafting only All-NBA players is simple. The 42-year-old believes that only the best players from the league should make it, and while chemistry problems might arise, it’s not something that can not be fixed over the summer.

On the flip side, Arenas pointed out that players like Jrue Holiday aren’t going to be able to replace players like Stephen Curry if they go down, pointing out the lack of interchangeability in the current USA roster. 

The current roster is definitely a departure from the previous USA teams we have seen. While the 2023 squad mostly comprised of young players, All-Star caliber players like Kyrie Irving, Paul George, and Jalen Brunson didn’t even make the preliminary roster for this year’s squad. The selection process didn’t comprise tryouts either, as Mavericks star Kyrie Irving also aired his dissatisfaction with the lack of transparency in the selection process, while revealing that he doesn’t believe he ever had a spot on this year’s team, to begin with.

About the author

Trikansh Kher

Trikansh Kher

Trikansh Kher is a writer at The Sports Rush. A lawyer by education, Trikansh has always been around sports. As a young track athlete Trikansh was introduced to basketball through 'street ball' mixtapes. He was hooked and it has been 'ball is life' ever since. Trikansh is a designer by profession, but couldn't keep away from basketball. A regular on the blacktop, his love for the game goes further than just hooping. If Trikansh isn't going through box scores for last night's game, you can find him in his studio working on his designs or playing squash at the local club.

Read more from Trikansh Kher

Share this article