Dwyane Wade

Redeem Team
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Dwyane Wade: Redeem Team 2008 Olympic documentary in the works

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Dwyane Wade said he’s executive producing a documentary on the Redeem Team, the 2008 U.S. Olympic basketball squad that took gold in Beijing.

“It’s something that we’ve been working on for the last year or so,” Wade said on the Platform Basketball podcast published last week. “For me, that was a big year, 2008. I had to kind of redeem myself, because everybody thought I was done.

“But that was an amazing time, man, and, like, that team, dog? Oh my gosh. That team was special.”

Previously, ESPN aired a five-part documentary series leading up to the 2008 Beijing Games.

The team was three years in the making.

In 2005, USA Basketball, led by new managing director Jerry Colangelo and new coach Mike Krzyzewski, laid out a long-term commitment to be a member of the 2008 Olympic team.

Some players were eager to restore U.S. pride. Americans finished sixth, third and third at 2002 Worlds, 2004 Olympics and 2006 Worlds. Kobe Bryant and Chris Paul each said they valued a gold medal over an NBA title.

Since the Dream Team in 1992, more and more NBA superstars were passing on Olympic participation, some citing a need for rest after a long NBA season. Beijing stopped that bleeding. Bryant played at his first Olympics. James, Wade and Chris Bosh hatched a friendship that led to their Miami Heat gathering.

The team ran undefeated to a gold-medal game against Spain, with a prime Pau Gasol and a 17-year-old Ricky Rubio. La Roja drew to 104-99 with 3:32 left before Bryant drilled a three and drew Rudy Fernandez‘s fifth and final foul. Spain cut it to 108-104 with 2:25 to go. Then Wade hit his fourth three-pointer of the game, and the Americans finished it off 118-107.

As Wade mentioned, that triumph was personally meaningful. After winning the 2006 NBA title, he missed 31 games the next season, including during one game being wheeled off in a chair with a dislocated shoulder. His Heat were swept out of the first round of the playoffs.

Wade underwent shoulder and knee surgeries in the 2007 offseason. In 2007-08, the Heat had the worst record in the league.

But at the Olympics, Wade led the Redeem Team in scoring. The Heat were back in the playoffs in 2008-09. James and Bosh joined for the following season, and they won back-to-back titles in 2012 and 2013.

MORE: LeBron James’ status for Tokyo Olympics unclear

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Carmelo Anthony wants Kobe Bryant at Rio Olympics

Kobe Bryant, Carmelo Anthony
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Carmelo Anthony said he would love to be Olympic teammates with Kobe Bryant for a third time next year.

Bryant, 37, announced Saturday that he will retire after this season, but he is still in the running for one of 12 spots on the U.S. Olympic team.

“For him to be with us and Rio and end it like that would be a good way to go out,” Anthony said Tuesday, according to the New York Daily News.

If Bryant were to make the 2016 Olympic team, he would be the oldest U.S. Olympic men’s basketball player ever, according to sports-reference.com.

Bryant was the oldest player on the 2012 U.S. Olympic men’s basketball team and the second-oldest in 2008, behind 35-year-old Jason Kidd.

Bryant’s competition to make the 2016 U.S. Olympic team at shooting guard is led by 2012 Olympian James Harden.

Another possible contender, 2004 and 2008 Olympian Dwyane Wade, is not expected to be interested in a run for Rio and was not on a 34-player camp roster mandatory for Olympic selection in August (though Bryant wasn’t on that roster, either).

Two more shooting guards — DeMar DeRozan and Klay Thompson — played with Harden at the 2014 FIBA World Cup and could be first-time Olympians in 2016.

The U.S. roster could include more point guards than shooting guards, though, with Stephen Curry, Kyrie Irving, Chris Paul and Russell Westbrook among those available.

Small forward is also stacked with LeBron James, Kevin Durant and Anthony.

MORE: Carmelo Anthony’s Olympic bronze medal auctioned