Black Community Particularly Invested in US Hoops Squad

'Redeem Team' must validate basketball's urban roots by reclaiming Olympic gold
By Sam Biddle,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 8, 2008 3:00 PM CDT
"For the first time ever, Team USA is all black," Thomas notes. "The resulting statement from a gold medal (or failure, for that matter) would be the most poignant since the inaugural Dream Team."   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – The US Olympic basketball team isn’t only out to reclaim gold, Vincent Thomas writes in Slam, but also to validate the black community’s investment in the NBA. “Team USA, whether they know it or like it … is on a quest to bring gold back to America, yes, but also to the NBA and the hood,” he writes of a squad he glosses the “Redeem Team.”

“As an African American man, but ultimately an individual, I never wanted to be represented by Paul Pierce or Tim Duncan or Allen Iverson or LeBron James,” Vincent writes of the headliners from the NBA, the lone US professional sports league where blacks play major roles at even the highest levels.  “I do, however, want those players to ‘represent.’ Dig?”