Big Embarrassment For NBA Player
Published: June 13, 2012
Big Embarrassment For NBA Player, Charlie Villanueva signed up to play for his country in the Olympic games. The level of competition in international basketball has steadily improved over the past 20 years, to the point where various national teams can do pretty well without a big-name NBA star on board. That said, it’s sure a big help for a team to have some of the best players in the world on the roster. That’s even more the case if you’re a relatively small, baseball-obsessed country like the Dominican Republic.
So it must have come as something of a shock to Detroit Pistons forward Charlie Villanueva when he was cut by national team head coach (and, more famously, Kentucky head coach) John Calipari. From Vincent Goodwill for The Detroit News:
After dealing with injuries for the entire lockout-shortened season for the Pistons – he didn’t play any significant minutes – he won’t play for the Dominican Republic national team because he’s out of shape, head coach John Calipari said.
“Charlie was not in good form when we saw him,” Calipari told Deportes en la Z. “He was overweight, and unfortunately, we could not slow down the entire team and it was a decision taken collectively. Last year, Charlie behaved really well with us and his only problem was his weight.”
Villanueva never was in camp with the team this summer, contrary to the FIBA.com report that said he had a private workout with the team in New York.
It’s believed the team wasn’t pleased with his conditioning last summer, which led to the decision, after being a big part of the national team in recent years. An ankle injury slowed his progress and any hopes of getting much playing time for the Pistons this season.
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