A rather young Team USA was able to assert its basketball dominance over another Olympics, as they earned another gold medal Sunday. The team that earned second place and a silver medal might not have as much to look forward to, however, as the Spanish national team may be near the end of their reign.
Juan Carlos Navarro and Pau Gasol will be 36 when the 2016 games in Rio de Janeiro roll around, Jose Calderon will be 30 and the rest of the team -- despite a likely return for Ricky Rubio -- isn't really able to match their experience on the world's biggest stages.
Their advancing ages don't mean that the Spaniards are ready to relinquish their spots on the national team, but Calderon told the London Free Press after Sunday's loss that it is a possibility.
"I think our team is different," said Calderon. "We've been at it for so long, Eurobasket (champs), world champions, everything you can name and we saw that today. We've stayed together from the beginning, bad times, good times, but it's the team-first always, and I love to be part of this team."
"We never think about what's going to happen in a few years or next year," said Calderon. "I think it's day by day. We keep playing, working together. This a great group of friends. This is a huge family. Some of us have been together for 10-12 years. We're really proud about that."
The current iteration of the Spanish national team deserves to be proud of a lot of things too, considering they've taken silver medals home from the last two Olympics, two golds home from the last two EuroBasket competitions and another gold at the 2006 FIBA World Championships.
Whether they stick together or not is obviously still up in the air -- at least judging from Calderon's comments, it's a possibility -- but the Spanish national team has little to regret if this is the last run with their current core.
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