The San Antonio Spurs will open the 2013-14 season with an NBA record 10 international players. Among them are Tony Parker (France), Manu Ginobii (Argentina) and Tiago Splitter (Brazil) who often play for their national team during the offseason.
This summer, Manu and Tiago did not play for their respective national teams but in the past have help guide their teams in international competition such as FIBA Americas or the Olympics. As for Parker, he only led Team France to EuroBasket gold and cemented himself as a basketball idol in his home country.
Brazilian basketball legend, Oscar Schmidt, weighed in on international players playing for their national teams and applauded Parker, Ginobili and Splitter for their consistent efforts for their home country on the court.
Via Washington Post:
Cleveland Cavaliers center Anderson “Varejao, most of the time comes. [San Antonio Spurs forward] Tiago Splitter – fantastic.
To be honest here, I love seeing players that are in the NBA head back to player for their national teams. The talent on these teams are just unreal. I just like seeing those players that are not in the league play at such a high level.
Gymbear you make valid points,but how would yo know he wouldn't make it in the nba. When playin against international competition he was, most of the time, the best player on the court. To me he proved he had what it takes to be in the nba when he battled Drazen.
Oscar was an incredible international player, but that one statement "I refuse to play NBA because of national team..." a bit of spin there. Oscar was cut out for International ball but when he played, he would not have made it in the NBA and he knew it. Much more physical then and Oscar wouldn't have thrived in the NBA as he did in international play.
Still, I do love the patriotism and passion of the international guys.