USA Basketball Player Blogs - July 24



During the course of USA Basketball training camp, players will be checking in on a regular basis to give you the scoop on what's going on in Las Vegas and in the minds of the team as they prepare for the 2006 FIBA World Championships.

Gilbert Arenas | LeBron James | Carmelo Anthony
Previous Player Blogs: July 23 | July 22 | July 21 | July 20 | July 19

Posted by Gilbert Arenas on July 24, 2006, 5:55 p.m. ET

Arenas goes in for the lay-up during Sunday's practice.
Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE/Getty Images
It was a good week. We came together from day one, the first minute everybody got here and it has been great. Everyone has been getting along and playing hard. We're pushing each other.

Today, we finished practice with a controlled scrimmage and our blue team had the white team (with LeBron, Carmelo and D-Wade) down, but they came back. That's how we gotta have it. We gotta push the stars of this team.

We need somebody that's going to go out there and do the dirty work, so that's what I've been trying to do this week. We need somebody that's going to jump on the loose balls.

I also had about nine threes in the scrimmage today so it was a good practice. I finally got my rhythm in this last day.

I have to have my second meeting with Coach K, but in the first one, he told me to just go out there, harrass people on defense and hit open shots. I did that today and that's how we got that big 'ol lead.

We get a break now, but I'm not tired. I don't get tired. I get a little winded, but not tired or sore.

We had fun, so whomever makes this team, we have a great chance of winning that gold.


Posted by LeBron James on July 24, 2006, 5:45 p.m. ET

Today's practice was good. Guys came in and competed and that's what it's all about. Guys took care of business today because we knew it was the last day.

I think I got better every day here. I felt better every day I came. I was trying to get back in shape and I finally accomplished that these last few days of practice. I'm looking forward to coming back next week.

I'm trying to be a leader here. That's always me. You can ask some of the players here how good of a leader I am. I'm always gonna try to be a leader every time I step on the court.


Posted by Carmelo Anthony on July 24, 2006, 5:40 p.m. ET

I think it was a great week for everybody. You don't get any pickup games like this anywhere in the world. I think we did a good job of coming together, understanding what we were here for and everybody got on the same page.

I was definitely on a mission. I just wanted to show everybody that whatever happened in 2004 with me, LeBron, Dwyane and Amare is behind us. The past is the past and we're here for business. Our business is to go out there and win.

Coach just wants me to play my game and help the team win. He wants me to lead the team and I think I've been doing a great job of doing that. He definitely wants everybody to shoot it if you're open, but most important is our defense.