The U.S. men will be walking a line no more than a few microns wide at the Beijing Olympics, where they're set to open play against China on Sunday.
On the one hand the Americans have had drummed into them, from their very first one-on-ones with U.S. National Team Managing Director
On the other hand, coach
So it's no surprise that James would slip off-message. Asked by
"I asked a question," says
After which teammate
Nowhere was heard a discouraging word. Or almost nowhere: "We want to be careful about providing bulletin-board material," said
"Yeah, he said it," Colangelo said today of King James' royal decree. "I don't have a problem with it. If anything, I hope that at the end of this competition we did what we said we'd do."
Or as assistant coach
As the Redeem Team minces along that finest of fine lines, we'll be posting an intermittent Humility Watch in this space, to monitor such things as talk vs. walk. We'll also keep tabs on body language, and unflappability in the face of those dodgy international refs and FIBA rules.
With the U.S. women set to tip off tomorrow against the Czech Republic, to get us started here's a Humility Watch (Women's Edition):