Olympic gold the next goal: Bogut

NBA championship ring – tick.


Next up, an Olympic gold medal.

Australia’s NBA champion Andrew Bogut says he could complete a “beautiful career” if he was able to add a gold medal to his personal trophy haul next year in Rio.

Bogut was back in his home town Melbourne to bask in the glory of helping the Golden State Warriors to the NBA title with a 4-2 series win over the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The 30-year-old believed as long as the Aussie contingent that was having such an impact in the NBA remained fit and healthy, it was their best opportunity to taste Olympic success.

The Boomers are set to include Matthew Dellavedova, who made a name for himself with his aggressive play for Cavaliers.

Patty Mills and Aron Baynes, who won last year’s championship with San Antonio, will also be part of a formidable line-up.

“We’ve got our best opportunity coming up,” Bogut said on Friday.

“I’ve knocked off the championship ring, which was No.1 on the checklist, up there with the Olympic gold medal so – if I can knock those two off – it would be a beautiful career.”

Bogut said he was looking forward to playing alongside Dellavedova, with the Boomers to go into camp next month to prepare for their Olympic qualifying series.

“I love playing with him,” he said.

“He deserves everything that he gets.

“I think he plays harder than anyone I’ve ever played with but, at the same time, you can understand how people might think it’s a little dirty,” Bogut said.

Bogut revealed he had been campaigning for the NBA to play a match at Melbourne’s Etihad Stadium.

“I’ve touched on the topic with people that are higher up in the NBA about trying to get a game out here,” Bogut said.

“At Etihad, we could open the roof, probably fit 30,000 good viewing seats, and I think it’d be a great spectacle.”

However, he said the popularity of the NBA in Australia counted against it.

“They look at it as ‘why should we invest when we’re already making money from them?’

“Money talks, unfortunately, and China is much more appealing for them for a commercial standpoint.

“We’ve got to keep putting more pressure on them.”

The Boomers will play their Olympic qualifying series against New Zealand in August including a game at Rod Laver Arena.