First Cup: Monday

  • Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News: "There is no better way for Jason Kidd to bow out of international basketball, having earned his second gold medal Sunday while extending his record to 56-0 in Olympics, Olympic qualifying and exhibition games. 'I'm undefeated,' Kidd, 35, said. 'I told them I can retire now from international ball, but LeBron [James] threw out something I didn't like. He said he won't play in 2012 unless I'm there."

  • Dan Bickley of The Arizona Republic : "It took him 40 years, and now Jerry Colangelo has his basketball championship. 'It fills the void,' he said. It took them 40 minutes of heart-pounding effort, and now the members of Team USA have put American basketball back where it belongs."TrueHoop First Cup

  • Jim Souhan of the Minneapolis Star Tribune: "They should have been thanking Allen Iverson and Larry Brown, and the 2004 Olympic team. The 2008 Olympic team finished undefeated after beating Spain 118-107 on Sunday in the gold medal game. The players danced and hugged like high school kids who had just won the state championship, then insisted on the entire team showing up for the postgame news conference. This is why they should have been thanking Iverson, Brown and the rest of their predecessors: Without the United States' 5-3 finish and disappointing bronze in Athens, what the 2008 team accomplished would have been considered routine, not the stuff of wild celebrations."

  • Mitch Lawrence of the New York Daily News: "So what was the difference between the Redeem Team and the nightmarish Scream Teams of the 2002 and 2006 World Championships, and the 2004 Olympics? According to former Team USA coach Larry Brown, it comes down to one word: Commitment. 'The thing is they got guys that are willing to make a three-year commitment, which I think is tremendous,' Brown said of this current Team USA. 'We had guys that committed (for 2004) and then all of a sudden 9/11 happened, and then there were injuries.'"

  • Scott Fowler of The Charlotte Observer: "What's next for Mike Krzyzewski? He goes back to his real job, coaching a Duke team that returns almost all of its key players and should be stronger inside. He also plans to write another book that will be based in part on his Olympic experience. First, though, he will celebrate wiith his family that came to China with him, and with the players and Colangelo. 'Mike brought class,' Jerry Colangelo said. 'He brought dignity. He brought organization. He's a hall of fame coach. He bled red, white and blue. He was the right guy at the right time.' Ultimately, Krzyzewski made it fun for the players. He made them remember what it felt like to be college kids again -- or, in the case of James and Bryant, to enjoy a little of the college experience they never had."

  • Chris Tomasson of the Rocky Mountain News: "'That's the best feeling I've ever had other than the birth of my son,'[Carmelo] Anthony said Sunday of the Olympic men's basketball medals ceremony. Four years after Anthony's disastrous Olympic trip to Athens, where he played little, got on the bad side of coach Larry Brown and was on a team that settled for bronze, the Nuggets forward got redemption."

  • Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun: "The grin didn't leave Chris Bosh's face. The grin didn't leave Jose Calderon's face. One won gold, the other won silver and both looked like they were walking on air at the Wukesong Basketball Gymnasium yesterday on the final day of the Summer Olympic Games. 'Personally,' said Bosh, the Toronto Raptors star, 'this is as big as you can get. This only comes once every four years."

  • David Whitley of the Orlando Sentinel: "Dwight Howard made 35 of 47 in Beijing, which is 74 percent. If he could do that every night in the NBA, it would seriously complicate the lives of opposing coaches. Unlike most of the U.S. team, Howard has already said he'll re-enlist for the 2012 Olympics. What does that mean to his overall development? 'It's a little bit of a grind, but I would never discourage any or our players from playing for their national team,' Stan Van Gundy said. 'I don't think there's a higher honor.' You get a happier player, a better leader and another gold medal for the U.S. If it means a less reliable bank shot, that's a sacrifice we'll just have to live with."

  • Geoff Calkins of the Memphis Commercial-Appeal: "Marc Gasol walked off the court, silver medal draped around his neck, proud and disappointed and happy all at once. 'It feels good to have accomplished what we accomplished," he said, 'but we were so close to winning the gold.' ... Gasol was one of the few Spanish players to stop and talk to reporters afterward, alternating between Spanish and English. The next game he plays will be for the Grizzlies. 'I'm going to relax for a little bit and then I'll be in Memphis,' he said. 'I can't wait to get started.'"

  • Darnell Mayberry of The Oklahoman: "... despite saying in a recent radio interview that Oklahoma City is 'the best thing that's ever happened to our basketball franchise and basketball team,' P.J. Carlesimo isn't ready to count on the newfound stability for a spike in victories this season. Certainty, Carlesimo says, will help. It won't guarantee Oklahoma City a better ballclub. 'Are we going to win X more games? Probably not,' Carlesimo said. 'But I just think it's going to make a difference.' Comfort will replace confusion for the players and coaches. Infatuation will replace the increasing indifference that swept the team's old city and its fans."