Bam Adebayo Reveals He’ll ‘Never Forget’ That Gregg Popovich Cut Him From Team USA

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Bam Adebayo Reveals He’ll ‘Never Forget’ That Gregg Popovich Cut Him From Team USA


Bam Adebayo is easily one of the best defenders in the league right now. He is often overshadowed by popular names such as Rudy Gobert and Draymond Green. But make no mistake, Adebayo deserves to be in the same tier as those defensive stalwarts. 

His ability to protect the rim while being able to hound defenders out on the perimeter is what garnered him recognition as a defensive player. He also has never shied away from challenging anyone who comes into his space on the defensive end.

Bam Adebayo was also an important asset in Team USA’s successful gold winning campaign during last year’s Olympics. The year before though, Bam was one of the last players who got cut from Team USA’s 2019 FIBA World Cup team, something he still hasn’t forgotten, and more importantly, something he still hasn’t forgiven Gregg Popovich for.

Adebayo said he still has animosity toward Popovich for cutting him.


“I felt like I should have been on the team. When I got to the Olympics, I had to let my animosity go because he was my coach at the time. But when we left, I let him know, ‘Look, for the time being in this Olympics, we’re cool. You’re my coach, I’m your player. We’re gonna be like you and Tim [Duncan]. But when we leave, just know I’ll never forget that you cut me.’”


But Popovich reacted the way we expect it from him – like a true gentleman. He even had a lot of respect for Adebayo’s honesty, while completely understanding his side of the case.


“He respected it so much. He was like, ‘I can’t be mad at that. I did what’s best for the team, but I’ve got to live with that,’”


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