Three talking points from the NBA

No guaranteed place in the USA team for Kobe Bryant? Stephen Curry's phenomenal form not a superise for his father? Our selection of interesting stories from the NBA.

Kobe Bryant, a 17-time All-Star, 15-time member of the All-NBA Team, and 12-time member of the All-Defensive team, will have to perform well to make it to the USA team.   -  AP (File Photo)

Rio finale for Kobe?

The prospect of Kobe Bryant putting a seal on his glittering NBA career with an Olympic gold has been downplayed by Team USA boss Jerry Colangelo, who says the veteran Los Angeles Lakers' star will have to earn his place on the roster for Rio next year.

The idea of Bryant playing in Rio was floated to Colangelo by the player's agent, Rob Pelinka. The manager revealed that he responded by emphasizing only players in form would be selected — a position that Bryant himself agreed with.

“I said, 'Rob, I don't rule anyone out, but it has got to be based on performance because there's so many people who want (to be on the team) - everyone wants to be on the roster,” said Colangelo.

The team boss also told the paper he met Bryant later and talked to him about playing in Rio.

"We talked about the same thing. He reiterated his interest, but also the fact that he didn't want any gifts, that he wanted to - if he wasn't capable of earning it, by his performance, then that was that," Colangelo added.

Like father, like son

Perhaps the least surprised follower of Stephen Curry's meteoric rise to NBA superstardom is his father Dell. The former NBA player revealed at the weekend that he had an early glimpse of his son's talent when he lost a game of one-on-one with him in 2002, when the Golden State Warriors star was just 14.

"I wasn't a one-on-one type of guy," Dell Curry told ESPN. "Once he was strong enough, he could dribble away from me and make a shot."

Losing to his teenage son was hard to stomach. "It felt horrible," Dell said. "I was pissed. But I never asked him to do it again because I wasn't sure I could ever beat him."

Iguodala misfires

Golden State star Andre Iguodala's normally impeccable sense of timing deserted him in the aftermath of the Warriors 114-98 victory over the Brooklyn Nets at the weekend.

Speaking to reporters after the Warriors extended their unbeaten run, Iguodala was asked how any opposing team could hope to beat the all-conquering reigning NBA champions.

"Going to the gun range and learning how to shoot. Kill us all. That's the only way you gonna beat us: If you shoot us and kill us and we can't play," said Iguodala.

The Golden State player's remarks came as California mourned the deaths of 14 people in a gun massacre in San Bernardino carried out by two radicalized Muslims.

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