Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade wants to be clear: he never said he wouldn't play for Team USA if he weren't paid.
The Chicago native, who won a gold medal in the 2008 Beijing Games, sought to clarify comments he made earlier in the day when asked if he thought players should be compensated for the time they spend competing in the Games.
"It's a lot of things you do for the Olympics -- a lot of jerseys you sell," Wade said Wednesday. "We play the whole summer. I do think guys should be compensated. Just like I think college players should be compensated as well. Unfortunately, it's not there. But I think it should be something, you know, there for it."
Wade was responding to an ESPN reporter following up on comments Boston Celtics guard Ray Allen made the night before.
Wade said he hasn't thought about how much players should be paid for their time. But he said there is a demanding schedule that comes with a commitment to the national team. This summer, NBA players whose teams advance deep into the playoffs could have only a couple of weeks of down time before the start of Team USA's training camp in late July.
In a burst of Tweets later Wednesday evening, Wade set out to clarify his comments:
I’m reading a lot of reports coming out about my comments re: the Olympics and compensation. And I want to clear this up personally...
I responded 2 a specific question asked by a reporter on my thoughts of Olympians being paid. I never asked to be paid to PLAY.
What I was referencing is there is a lot of Olympic business that happens that athletes are not a part of - and it’s a complicated issue
BUT my love 4 the game & pride 4 USA motivates me more than any $$$ amount. I repped my country in 2004 when we won the bronze medal and...
...stood proudly to receive our gold medal in 2008 in Beijing. It’s always been an honor for me to be a part of the USA Olympic family...
...and I’m looking forward to doing it again in London this summer.