Bosh's Beijing won't translate

FRANK ZICARELLI -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:35 AM ET

Chris Bosh wasn't looking so much for redemption as he was a reward when he agreed to sacrifice his time and game for the U.S. Olympic team.

After all, he hasn't won anything of any consequence since his days in Dallas as a high schooler.

While winning a gold medal and helping the U.S. regain its lustre on the international stage should be applauded, they mean very little when it comes to the NBA and the Raptors.

This notion that Bosh will somehow benefit from playing at a high level is utter nonsense.

The international game, from its coaching, culture and competitors, is as far from the NBA experience as the distance from Toronto to Beijing.

Bosh will be buoyed, but his memories of China will serve no purpose when the Raptors tip off their regular season on Oct. 29.

Bosh being Bosh and knowing how the media game gets played, he'll talk glowingly about the Olympic experience when the subject inevitably gets broached.

He'll say all the right things, but no one is going to remember his role in helping the U.S. defeat Spain.

No one is going to confuse Roko Ukic for Jason Kidd, Will Solomon for LeBron James or Hassan Adams for Kobe Bryant.

When surrounded by great players, Bosh continues to show that be belongs on the same floor.

Bosh didn't need the Olympics to prove that point.

What Bosh needs is to get mean, get his elbows in a defender's face, make the right decision out of double teams and learn from Jermaine O'Neal, who means more to the Raptors franchise player than any Spanish conquest or Olympic glory.

Assuming he stays healthy and assuming he accepts being the second option, O'Neal will take Bosh's game to that all-important next level and perhaps the Raptors will get out of the first round.

No Olympic exposure against whatever opponent can prepare someone for a playoff run.

If anything, what the Olympics did was restore the swagger that has gone missing from the Americans, something Bosh can use for this coming NBA season.

Other than that, nothing should be gleaned from Bosh being in Beijing.

ONE MO TIME

Speaking of Olympians, King James returns to a revamped Cavs kingdom that features Mo Williams.

Cleveland has tried in vain to find someone who can create his own shot and take the pressure off of James.

Williams just might be that guy, but only time will tell.

James, like Bosh, is eligible for free agency in the summer of 2010.

The O'Neal trade to Toronto justifiably made a lot noise. Williams' acquisition didn't create the same buzz, but his presence might be as impactful.

NO KIDDING

The pass-first Kidd passed up plenty of open looks as he copped his second Olympic gold medal, attempting seven shots and draining six.

When he rejoins the Mavs and begins to understand new coach Rick Carlisle's system, Kidd plans on heaving the rock with more abandon.

"Now I'll become selfish and shoot all of those shots that I didn't shoot (in China)," Kidd told the Dallas Morning News.

"Carlisle and I talked about it. I've been working on shooting a lot of shots. We'll see what happens."

Kidd, 35, is entering the final year of a contract that pays him $20 million US.

MARBURY EYES MILAN

Stephon Marbury is already planning for life after the NBA.

The combo guard, who has never and will never live up to the hype and hefty contract, wants to play in Milan by as early as next season.

"Why wouldn't you want to play basketball, still make money and live in a place that's beautiful," Marbury told the New York Post.

Marbury's days in Gotham are numbered. No team will trade for him, fuelling rumours that the Knicks will release Marbury at some point this coming season.

"There's no place but America where you can make 20 million dollars for free. I can't get mad if they want to go in a different direction and want to pay me."


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