NBA Commissioner Stern May Limit Age For Olympic Team, Not For World Cup
NBA Commissioner David Stern said that the league will consider limiting the eligibility of players on the U.S. Olympic basketball team roster to age 23 and under, while putting no age restrictions on World Cup basketball play. Stern said: "I think we got a lot out of the Olympics, we helped grow the game. We are in 215 countries whereas we were probably in 80 in 1992. But I think it's appropriate to step back and take stock of where we're going. And I do have some great deal of sympathy for those teams whose players grow up in a way that says I will play under any circumstance for my country regardless of injury to me and the threat of my career. And maybe those players are put under enormous pressure to play for their homeland and perhaps an age limitation would remove some of the pressure." NBA Deputy Commissioner Adam Silver said that he would consider following the soccer model. Silver: "For the Olympics only, it would be 23 and under, and then for the World Cup of basketball, just like with the World Cup of soccer, that competition would be eligible to anyone." But Stern did not put a timeline on the consideration of Olympic player age restrictions. Stern:"I think there might be a better balance that we currently have. And maybe we'll do nothing" (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL).