Posts Tagged ‘Becky Hammon’


June 29, 2008


Former BYU basketball player Travis Hansen says it’s always been his dream to play in the Olympics.

Hansen may soon get a chance to make that dream come true. If he plays for Russia. Hansen spent one year of professional basketball with the NBA’s Atlanta Hawks. For the rest of his career the 30-year-old Hansen has bounced around Europe. Recently he was invited by Russia to try out for their Olympic basketball team.

Obviously, with superstars like Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and other dreamteamers representing Team USA, Hansen wasn’t going to be selected for the American Olympic squad. Instead, Hansen accepted the invitation from the Russian team to represent their country in the Olympics. Said Hansen,


“I’d love to play for Team USA but they didn’t invite me. Every athlete dreams about playing in the Olympics,” Hansen said. “The Cold War ended a long time ago, so I figured why not.”



Hansen’s case is similar to that of WNBA player Becky Hammon. Hammon, the runner-up in last year’s WNBA MVP voting, was passed over for a spot on Team USA. Instead, she’s playing for Russia in the upcoming Olympics. Hammon has received a ton of criticism for being “unpatriotic.” Originally from Rapid City, South Dakota, she grew up in America’s heartland.

U.S. Olympic coach Anne Donovan recently blasted Hammon,



“If you play in this country, live in this country and you grow up in the heartland – and you put on a Russian uniform – you are not a patriotic person.”


Hammon compounded the situation by becoming a Russian citizen. There have even been articles written which detail Hammon being called a “traitor.”

Travis Hansen hasn’t been the victim of any such difficulty. Apparently nobody knows who he is. He also still hasn’t made the final roster of the Russian squad.