posted on Jul, 31 2004 @ 01:11 PM
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Allen Iverson, LeBron James and Amare Stoudemire of the U.S. Olympic team were suspended from Saturday's exhibition game against
Puerto Rico for missing a team meeting.
The suspensions left the U.S. team with only nine players. One of them, center Emeka Okafor, was hobbled all week with an injured ankle.
Iverson and James were both listed as guards, which left the Americans with only two more listed guards, Stephon Marbury and Dwyane Wade.
Head coach Larry Brown made the decision on the suspensions, adding another interesting twist to his relationship with Iverson. Iverson played for
Brown for six seasons in Philadelphia. Brown left after the 2003 season, in large part because the two never fully got along. Earlier this week, both
men said they had patched up their once-fractured relationship.
The three suspended players watched the game from the end of the bench. The exhibition game closed out a week of training for the team, which heads to
Europe to continue preparations for the Olympics.
When the suspensions were announced over the public-address system to the sellout crowd in Jacksonville, the fans booed, and Brown shot a nasty look
over to the press table, clearly upset the suspensions were announced to the fans.