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Zach Randolph Wants to Play for Team USA

December 6, 2010

Chris Paul is ready to go. Amar’e wants to go. Now we can add Zach Randolph’s name to the list. I like Zach’s game, but I think he might be on the outside looking in. Considering the current roster of Carlos Boozer, Chris Bosh and Dwight Howard, then the potential new guys of Amar’e Stoudemire, Kevin Love, Blake Griffin and LaMarcus Aldridge, it will be tough for him to grab one of the 12 golden roster spots.

From Fan House:

DENVER — Team USA was short on tall guys for last summer’s FIBA World Championship in Turkey. If there are any thoughts about needing another big man for the 2012 Olympics in London, Zach Randolph is ready to volunteer.

“That would be something I would like to do,” the Memphis forward said before Sunday’s game at Denver. “I’d definitely like to play on the USA team, and be able to tell my kids I did play for the USA team.”

Randolph, an All-Star for the first time last season, said he’s wanted to play for Team USA for years. But he said he’s never received any feelers.

“I’ve always wanted to play,” said Randolph, 29, a 10-year veteran. “A couple of years ago, when I was in Portland, coach (Nate) McMillan went down there with the guys (and Randolph was hoping for an invite of his own).”

McMillan was named a Team USA assistant in 2006, a position he will hold at least through the 2012 Olympics. McMillan coached Randolph with the Trail Blazers from 2005-07.

“I’d definitely be interested,” Randolph said of a Team USA invite. “I’ll keep working and … they might need me.”

The 6-foot-9 Randolph, who entered Sunday averaging 16.6 points and 11.4 rebounds, is due to become a free agent next summer after making $17.33 million in the final year of his deal.

Randolph had told FanHouse last April he believes he’s worthy of getting a contract extension similar to the three-year, $57 million one Lakers star Pau Gasol got last December. And Randolph told FanHouse about an extension last month, “I want to do it now.”

But Randolph has pulled back. He now says that he’s going to let his agent, Raymond Brothers, worry about that while he concentrates on “playing ball.” Randolph said he’d even now be content if nothing were to get done until next summer.

“That’s cool,” he said.

Randolph also would consider it pretty cool if he’s playing for Team USA in the summer of 2012.

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