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Opposition To Stern's U-23 Plan Intensifies

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Being provincial Americans, when we first started thinking about David Stern's move to restrict Olympic competition to U-23 players, we focused on Americans and didn't really consider that it would affect the rest of the world as well. We thought it was aimed at Americans, by Americans.

But of course it would affect the rest: if it were in place for this Olympics, Manu Ginobli and Tony Parker, among others,would be forced out. Increasingly, the rest of the world is getting seriously annoyed with the NBA over this idea and with over 200 members of FIBA, he has a lot of persuading to do. Most of them seem fairly happy with the Olympic platform.

The NBA's point that they aren't getting anything back is not really valid - they've gotten dozens of players since 1992 from all over the world, and they are among the top players in the league: Ginobli, Parker, Ricky Rubio, Dirk Nowitzki - the Olympics after 1992 revolutionized basketball around the world and greatly accelerated development.

And as we said previously, as long as the taxpayers are invested, willingly or not, in their fancy new arenas, the Olympics seems like a small payback for the owners. If they want to argue that they're getting nothing back, then let them pay for their own stadia.

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