A New Era for USA Basketball
2004 was a dismal year for USA Basketball, with the team only able to secure a bronze medal at the Olympic Games, despite being led by a young LeBron James. It was clear that a change was needed, and for the 2008 Olympics, Mike Krzyzewski was appointed as head coach, and the Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant was roped in as well.
James vs. Bryant
At the time, James was striving to match Bryant’s success, as the latter was considered the greatest basketball player in the world. There were worries that too much ego would be present on Team USA, but according to Krzyzewski, there were never any issues between the two and they shared a genuine bond.
Bryant was at the peak of his career in 2008, having led the Lakers to the NBA Finals for the fifth time in his career. He was a crucial part of Team USA’s success, and his leadership was invaluable in helping the team to a gold medal.
The 2008 Olympics marked a new era for USA Basketball, with the team finally able to secure the gold medal. Bryant and James were both instrumental in this success, and their bond was an important factor in the team’s victory.