Roy Hibbert's summer was most likely a good one. He likely improved some part of his game, built some muscle and put on weight. His summer was incomplete however.
Something he desperately wanted to do was left beyond his reach.
Trying out for, being a part of and, eventually, playing for Team USA.
That is still Hibbert's seemingly unattainable dream. Hibbert was born in Jamaica but is an American citizen. However, he played a game for the Jamaican national team, thus making him ineligible to compete for any other senior national team. That looks to be a mistake Hibbert is regreting.
It has not stopped Hibbert from wanting to play for Team USA. He and his agent, along with a group of international lawyers, are working on petitioning FIBA to change his playing status and allow him to play for Team USA.
I wanted to play in the Olympics and then they invited some other guys from my draft class to be centers,” Hibbert explained to Scott Agness of Pacers.com. “I thought I could have been in that group. If I had gotten invited, I wouldn’t have played for Team Jamaica. You live and you learn. If I don’t play for Team USA ever again, I’ll enjoy my summers and bulk up like I did this summer.
Hibbert said he believes Team USA has to initiate the appeal, but his lawyers are working on getting him out of the Team Jamaica program. The question then becomes whether Team USA wants him for the roster.
And, well, they should.
Team USA's biggest weakness remains at the center position. During the 2012 Olympics, the team carried only Tyson Chandler and Anthony Davis as centers. Kevin Love might be able to play in a pinch. The 2008 Olympics saw the team use a somewhat underwhelming Dwight Howard and Chris Bosh as center.
That has not stopped the U.S. Olympic team from winning any of these events.
But if the team plans to keep sending its best players, Hibbert certainly should consider himself and be considered among them at the center position.
And so Hibbert keeps on fighting for his spot, if FIBA will give it to him.
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