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Updated Aug 14, 2012 - 7:46 pm

Colangelo weighs in on Dream Team vs 2012 team debate

United States' Kevin Durant, left, and LeBron James celebrate during the men's gold medal basketball game against Spain at the 2012 Summer Olympics, Sunday, Aug. 12, 2012, in London. United States won the game 107-100. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

It has been discussed around the water cooler and all over Twitter: would the 2012 men's Olympic basketball team be able to defeat the Dream Team of 1992?

Jerry Colangelo, Director of USA basketball and orchestrator of the 2012 roster seems to think the 2012 team has the upper hand.

"I'm not going to get involved in an argument about the Dream Team of 1992 that had no competition to play against," Jerry Colangelo told Arizona Sports 620's Doug and Wolf Tuesday. "Really when you look at that roster half the players were on the down side (of their career), and three or four of them could hardly play at that time due to age."

Colangelo has a strong point; just by name the Dream Team seems to have the upper hand against the 2012 team, but when you account for age and health at that time rather than reputation the 2012 team looks to take the gold.

Magic Johnson had been retired from the NBA for a full season when the 1992 Olympics came, while Larry Bird retired after the 1991-92 season because of aging knees and John Stockton never started a game for the Dream Team because Coach Chuck Daly chose to go with Scottie Pippen at point guard to increase the team's size.

Though size would be the clear advantage for the Dream Team, Colangelo feels being small was the 2012 team's advantage this year's Olympics.

"Athleticism, quickness and speed will beat size every day because what usually goes with size is they have to step slow," Colangelo said regarding the 2012 team.

While the age and speed of many of the players would be a concern for the Dream Team, Charles Barkley, Scottie Pippen, Patrick Ewing and Michael Jordan were all under the age of 30 and on top of their game.

Whether you favor the Dream Team or the 2012 team, both teams will be remembered for their ability to wow on the court while building much more than an All-Star team. The magic of the Olympics makes post season rivals forget all about the battle for the NBA Finals trophy for just a few months, something Colangelo said reminds him of the old days.

"They love being with one another. We talk about sports and how cruel it can be at times, the lack of comradery and the lack of how things used to be," Colangelo said. "Players and coaches alike like to say things aren't the way they used to be in terms of relationships, well we've turned the clock back on this one because it doesn't get much better than what I've seen with USA basketball in the last seven or eight years."

Much like Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley and Patrick Ewing had to do in the '90s, it's time for Lebron James, Kobe Bryant and Kevin Durant to put down the Team USA jersey, and it's time for us to stop the comparisons because as of now they go back to being rivals rather than teammates. At least until 2016 rolls around.


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