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In 1992 the USA had the greatest Olympic basketball team to date. Find out where they are now!
1992 saw the rise of the greatest basketball team to come out of the USA which took gold at the Olympics. This team alone is regarded as being responsible for the success of the NBA to this day, as a league that is watched all around the globe. In the 1992 Olympics held in Barcelona, team USA destroyed every opponent by a 30-point margin, at least, thanks to star players such as Christian Laettner, Larry Bird, Scottie Pippen, and Micheal Jordon.
For those backing team USA through basketball betting at this Olympics, they would have been very happy to watch this special team cruise through every game like it was just a practice session. Over 30 years on, you may be wondering where the team member of this squad is now. Read on to find out how their careers unfolded after this memorable tournament.
Christian Laettner was the only college basketball player selected for the 1992 USA Olympic team. He was the youngest player on the dream team and was chosen over Shaquille O’Neal, who was the number one draft pick in the NBA at the time. He didn’t let this pressure get to him and had an amazing performance during the entire tournament. He even had the best free-throw stats making an impressive 18 out of 20 shots.
After winning gold at the Olympics, Laettner went on to have a career in the NBA that lasted a total of 13 seasons across 6 different teams. When he retired from the sport, he went into business with Brian Davis and became one of the owners of D.C. United, a team in the MLS (Major League Soccer). Once he sold his take in D.C. United, Laettner started up several training camps for the youth under the Christian Laettner Basketball Academy. Nowadays, he spends his time reminiscing about his past on TV shows, including ESPN’s “I Hate Christian Laettner” and “The Z Team” on the Olympic Channel.
Unlike Christian Laettner, the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona marked the end of NBA superstar Larry Bird’s career, and what a way to do it. He was 35 years of age in 1992, which made him the oldest player on the squad. He had many outstanding performances at the Olympics, which helped team USA to a gold medal. After the 1992 Olympics, Bird became an assistant at the Boston Celtics front office. He then led the Indiana Pacers, helping them make the Conference finals against the Chicago Bulls, where they narrowly lost.
He was awarded the NBA executive year of the year after the 2011 season with the Pacers but had to step down for health reasons until 2013 when he took on the role once more. In 2017, Larry bird resigned as the head of the team but continued to work as a consultant for the team. In 2019, he won the NBA Lifetime Achievement Award alongside his old teammate Earvin Johnson.
Scottie Pippen will forever be regarded as the right-hand man to Michael Jordan during their spell together at the Chicago Bulls. In 1987 he was the 5th pick in the overall NBA draft after being crowned a 7-time all-star player throughout his career that spanned 17 years. His performance during the 1992 Olympics was nothing short of a spectacle, with 5.9 assists per game which put him at number one for this statistic. Four years later, he helped Team USA take the gold medal for basketball once more in Atlanta. Following this, Scottie Pippen is the only player to ever win an Olympic gold medal and an NBA title in the same year in two different years, 1992 and 1996.
Scottie Pippen spent 11 seasons at the Chicago Bulls and then spent one year at the Housten Rockets before moving to the Portland Trail Blazers for 4 years. He then went on to play for several teams in Sweden and Finland in 2008 before returning to the Chicago Bulls in 2010 as an ambassador for the team in 2010, he also played a role as a special advisor for the squad. In recent times, Pippen is no longer part of the Chicago Bulls organization but is still regarded as being one of the best basketball players of all time.
Michael Jordon is one of the biggest names to come out of basketball in the history of the game. By the time the 1992 Olympic games came around, he already had an outstanding career best known for his fantastic dunk. However, he was just as effective in defense. From 1986 to 1987, he was the first player to ever manage 200 steals as well as 100 blocks in a single season. Fast forward to the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, Jordon was a player that many people had their eye on as the star player, with basketball betters everywhere rooting for his success. Although he only managed to make 45.1% of his shots taken, he took the tournament by storm, being the only player that started all eight games.
Jordon didn’t properly retire until 2003, and in 2006 he bought shares in the Hornets, and in 2010 he was the majority owner. This legend is best known for being the inspiration for the release of Nike’s Air Jordans, which were created back in 1998. Nowadays, these sneakers are regarded as being the most well-known sports item in the entire world, and in 2016, he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom award.