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DeAndre Jordan: Securing gold medal trumps winning NBA title

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Carmelo Anthony made some waves last week by stating he believes winning a gold medal at the Olympics takes away the sting of not yet winning an NBA title. Team USA teammate DeAndre Jordan arguably took it one step further by arguing winning a gold medal is a better accomplishment than being part of a championship team.

The Los Angeles Clippers superstar center made his opinion known as Team USA prepared for Wednesday’s quarterfinals match-up with Argentina.

“I think they’re above NBA rings,” Jordan said of an Olympics gold medal. “I may get in trouble for saying that, but I believe that. I feel like this is more special. You’re not just playing teams in the U.S. You’re playing teams from all over the world. And this is even more special because there’s an NBA champion crowned every year, but this is every four years.

“You’ve got to really think about that, man, because it’s extremely special.”

A gold medal without a doubt is extremely special as Jordan argues, but his comments will nevertheless rub some folks the wrong way. Jordan subjects himself to some criticism given he’s paid millions upon millions of dollars to win titles for the team that employs him.

Same goes for Anthony, who could become the first U.S. Olympic basketball player to win three gold medals should Team USA finish what it has started in Rio. And the New York Knicks veteran insists that if his NBA career ends without a title, three gold medals will most certainly take away the sting of it.

“I can look back on it when my career is over — if I don’t have an NBA championship ring — and say I had a great career,” he said.

Jordan respects Anthony greatly and agrees with the assertion that three gold medals represents a tremendous career accomplishment.

“I will say that he had a great career regardless of what other people say,” he said.

Many will likely disagree with that sentiment. And in the case of both Anthony and Jordan, perhaps especially those who sign their NBA paychecks.

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