Triano takes over for Leo Rautins, who resigned in 2011 after failing to qualify for the London Olympics and not getting the team to meet Canada’s expectation. So how does Canada become relevant again in the eyes of the basketball world?
Maybe they should look to the Canadian hockey program, a program which has consistently been able to win at the highest level. As with Hockey Canada, the organization must be strong from the bottom up, starting with a cohesive group of youngsters and letting them mature into a winning team.
Fortunately for Triano, his team is young, averaging between the ages of 21-22 years old, and possess the willingness to proudly represent Canada on a global stage. Add to the fact that many of these players are college stars, NBA lottery picks, and upcoming talents like Corey Joseph and Tristan Thompson, and the future of the National team looks bright. The road ahead to the 2016 Olympics looks a little less bumpy.
Triano will have a successful tenure as head coach this time around. Why? First, as mentioned above, he has a greater talent pool to work with, and a fellow friend in Nash to guide him, plus his experience from coaching the Raptors. And then there’s the fact that he was an assistant/training coach for the USA Basketball Team during their golden run at the Beijing Olympics, where he was able to gain firsthand knowledge on the kind of team and mindset it takes to compete at the pinnacle of international basketball. He watched how great players came together to create a great team atmosphere and a winning attitude.
With the mentorship of Mike Krzyzewski, Triano learned from one of the greatest coaches in history. Coach K did a great job of re-building the USA basketball program after the failure of 2004 in Athens. He, as Triano intends to do, brought in a young group of talented players like LeBron James, and Dwyane Wade, and matched them with veterans like Kobe Bryant to lead the way. They built team unity through prolonged training camps where the players learned to coexist with each other for the betterment of the USA Basketball. If Triano can take this idea and make it his own for the Canadian Program, the team should win plenty of games.
As the hype and news cycle dies down, the real work starts. Can Triano transform the Basketball Program into a winner? Maybe the alliance of Nash and Triano can lay the foundations for a run at major tournaments including the 2016 Olympic Games. With Nash on board it creates name recognition for the program and could ultimately attractive more corporate funding to expand the program. More money, better players, a proven head coach and a well-respected GM indicates that a new era in Canadian National Basketball has begun.