Nick Nurse Signs Extension with Canadian National Basketball Team

Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse, who led the team to its first NBA Championship during the 2018-19 season, has re-signed with the Men's Canadian National Basketball Team as head coach until the end of the next Olympic cycle (2024). The announcement was made on local Toronto program Tim and Friends

Nurse admitted he thinks the National Team doesn't have as much cohesiveness as it should, saying
We just thought that was the most valuable lesson we learned in the last run: We got beat by a team (Czech Republic) that was very good because they’d been together for a long time. They returned 10 of 12 guys from their sixth-place World Cup team and you could see that chemistry. We could even feel it against Greece. They came out as a well-oiled machine. So we figure we’ve got to step up and do it. We want to get on the podium and we have to exhaust all routes and put our best effort out, and we feel this is it.
The goal for Canada in the next Olympics should be to get on the podium, as for the last seven years they have been the country with the second-most NBA players after the USA. With so many players feeding into the NBA from Canada, there should be no problem qualifying for the Olympics - as long as they can get all of their strongest players together for long periods of time. 

Of course, players being unavailable for tournaments such as world championships and Olympics is nothing new. Traditionally, only the USA is strong enough to weather the storm whereas other countries simply don't have that luxury. Nurse hopes that his new extension will coincide with more players prepared to play for Canada moving forward. 

Look for the Maple Leaf to be flying on the podium in the 2024 Paris Olympics.  

Photo Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports