Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo were postponed. This year, the Games will commence in Tokyo and the United States is beginning to finalize their teams for the greatest of international events. This year, two Milwaukee Bucks’ players will represent the United States on Team USA’s 12-man roster. Khris Middleton and Jrue Holiday both are reported to have accepted invitations, according to ESPN.
How Will This Affect The Bucks?
Since the Tokyo Olympics do not start until after the NBA Finals, Middleton’s and Holiday’s participation will have no effect on the team’s pursuit of a NBA title. What could be concerning for Bucks’ fans is the lack of rest the two players will have after the Bucks’ season ends and next season begins. About a week ago, LeBron James tweeted that he predicted an increase in injuries among NBA players due to the shortened offseason.
Whether or not another short offseason will affect Middleton or Holiday has yet to be seen. However, it will certainly be a topic of discussion should they suffer injuries of any kind next season.
They Could Join Some Exclusive Company
If the Milwaukee Bucks win the NBA title, and if Team USA wins the Gold Medal, both Middleton and Holiday could join a very exclusive list of players. The only NBA players who have won a title and a gold medal in the same season are Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Lamar Odom, LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, and Marc Gasol. Gasol won the 2019 NBA title with Toronto, then won a gold medal in the FIBA World Cup with Spain. The other players on the list won titles and then Olympic Gold Medals.
If WNBA players were included, a total of 19 players have won basketball league championships and gold medals in the same year.
Other Bucks Players Who Have Participated In The Olympics
- Bob Boozer- Boozer played for the Bucks for one year, their only championship season. A decade before, he won a Gold Medal with Team USA in the 1960 Olympics.
- Oscar Robertson- Robertson was on the same Gold Medal-winning team as Bob Boozer.
- Ernie Grunfeld- The year before the Bucks drafted Grunfeld in the 11th round, Grunfeld won a Gold Medal with Team USA in the 1976 Olympic Games.
- Quinn Buckner- Buckner won a Gold Medal with Grunfeld in 1976.
- Adrian Dantley- He only played 10 games as a Buck at the end of his career, but he was on the same 1976 Gold Medal-winning team as Grunfeld and Buckner.
- Alvin Robertson- Robertson won a Gold Medal in 1984 when Los Angeles hosted the Olympic Games.
- Toni Kukoc- Kukoc played in the 1988, 1992, and 1996 Olympic Games for Yugoslavia/Croatia. He won Silver Medals in 1988 and 1992.
- J.R. Reid- Reid played for the Bucks in the 1999-2000 season; he won a Bronze Medal with Team USA in 1988.
- Jeff Grayer- Grayer was a teammate of Reid’s on the 1988 Team USA Bronze Medal team.
- Gary Payton- His time with the Bucks was forgettable, but he won Gold Medals with Team USA in 1996 and 2000.
- Ray Allen- The first Bucks’ player to play in the Olympics while a member of the team, Allen won Gold in 2000.
- Vin Baker- Even though he was past his prime and time in Milwaukee, Baker was a contributing member of the 2000 Gold Medal-winning team.
- Yi Jianlian- One of the worst first round picks by the Bucks (sixth overall pick), Yi represented China in 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2016. He has yet to win a medal.
- Richard Jefferson- Jefferson was a member of the 2004 Team USA group that won a Bronze Medal in Athens.
- Andrue Bogut- The former number one overall pick represented Australia in 2004, 2008, and 2016. He missed the 2012 Games due to injury.
- Carlos Delfino- The Argentinian is the most decorated Olympian in Bucks’ history. He represented Argentina in 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2016. He won a Gold Medal in 2004 and a Bronze Medal in 2008.
- Michael Redd- Redd was a member of the 2008 Team USA Gold Medal-winning team in Beijing.
- Matthew Dellavedova- Dellavedova represented Australia in 2012 and 2016.
- Miroslav Raduljica- Raduljica played 48 games for the Bucks in their terrible 2013-2014 season. He represented Serbia in the 2016 Olympics.
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