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Howard wants to play on 2016 Olympic team

The SportsXchange

Los Angeles Lakers center Dwight Howard, who missed last summer's Olympics because of back surgery, said Thursday he wants to play in the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

"No doubt," Howard told ESPNLA.com.

Howard won a gold medal at the 2008 Olympics, but was upset he wasn't able to repeat in 2012.

"I was mad I couldn't play in the playoffs," said Howard, who missed last season's NBA playoffs with the Orlando Magic because of the surgery before he was traded to the Lakers. "I was mad I couldn't play in the Olympics. .... I was looking forward to going to London. I was looking forward to making a big run in the playoffs last season, so I wasn't too happy about the fact that I had to have surgery and miss a lot of basketball."

Because of injuries to Howard, Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin, Miami center Chris Bosch and Portland center LaMarcus Aldridge, the U.S. won the gold with Tyson Chandler as its main big man.

Howard said he has kept in touch with USA Basketball managing director Jerry Colangelo, who invited him to play on the 2012 team.

"He's cool with me," Howard said. "He's always been someone that I've thought highly of and he's always supported me."

Earlier this week, Duke coach Mike Krzyzewksi announced that he will not return as the U.S. Olympics coach.
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