Feb 19, 2016 03:28 PM EST
Mike Krzyzewski Emphasizes He Has No Plans to Miss 2016 Rio Olympics
After expressing doubt about Mike Krzyzewski's health allowing him to coach at the 2016 Rio Olympics, USA Basketball Chairman Jerry Colangelo changed his tune.
"I'd like to clarify comments I made last weekend in Toronto. I fully expect Coach K to lead the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team in Rio. I was aware that [Krzyzewski] planned to have knee replacement surgery immediately after Duke's season was completed, but at no time have Coach and I ever discussed him not coaching the USA national team this summer," he said in a statement obtained by ESPN. "I remain 100 percent convinced that there is no better coach to lead the U.S. as it looks to successfully defend its Olympic gold medal in Rio and represent the United States in a manner all Americans will be proud of."
Krzyzewski echoed Colangelo's remarks, saying he will undergo knee surgery in between Duke's basketball season and the start of the Olympics. The Rio games are likely to be Krzyzewski's last international competition coaching Team USA, and he iterated his health will not hold him back.
"Immediately after the Duke basketball season is completed, I will undergo replacement surgery on my left knee," he said in a statement. "Our medical team here at Duke and I expect a full recovery following the rehabilitation process and I have every intention of coaching the United States national team in Rio at the 2016 Olympics."
In an interview with NBA TV, Colangelo said he was "thinking about what ifs" in regards to Krzyzewski's status for the Rio games. Krzyzewski was hospitalized earlier this month for illness and has to miss Duke's game against Georgia Tech, but has appeared healthy since.
Like its roster of players, Team USA has an all-star coaching staff including Jim Boeheim, Monty Williams, and Tim Thibodeau. Krzyzewski has helmed Team USA since 2005 and will hand the reigns over to San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Poppovich after the Olympics.
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