When it was announced that Kevin Love was on the initial roster, the news was met with ire by many, given how Love had meandered through the past two seasons in Cleveland. USA Basketball Managing Director Jerry Colangelo explained how the decision to invite Love came about as well what the team’s expectations were for the Cavs big man.
“I didn’t think Kevin Love was going to play. I wasn’t even sure he had much left to play,” Colangelo said. “He reached out to us and said he was in shape and said he felt he owed us. And on the basis of that, we’re looking at someone with international experience who at one time was a heck of a rebounder and could still shoot the ball. You know, being like a 12th man on a roster.”
Love opted to withdrew his name from competition before the team departed for Japan, citing ongoing calf issues.
“Well, it didn’t work out,” Colangelo, who will retire as USA Basketball’s managing director after this year’s Olympics, continued. “He wasn’t in shape. And he was way behind as it turned out. So you move on. Call it a mistake. Call it giving someone an opportunity. Someone who had equity with us.”