France head coach Vincent Collet has arrived in the United States to hold talks with the NBA stars that he hopes will be on the roster for Eurobasket this summer.
Collet has reportedly travelled to San Antonio with the French Federation Basketball (FFBB) Director Patrick Beesley to meet with Nando De Colo, Boris Diaw and Tony Parker as he begins his own preparations for this summer’s tournament in Slovenia.
The 49-year-old is also looking to meet with big man Ronny Turiaf on this trip. The Spurs host the Los Angeles Clippers on Friday night.
After his stint in Texas, which will include a meeting with Dallas Mavericks’ Rodrigue Beaubois on Saturday, even though the guard is currently on the injured list, Collet and Beesley will travel to Chicago on Sunday to meet up with center Joakim Noah before ending the trip with an appearance to the nation’s capital of Washington DC to see forward Kevin Seraphin.
Scheduling this trip though meant that the French domestic league has been modified slightly to allow Collet, who is also the head coach of Strasbourg to travel.
“To make this trip possible, both the national league and the clubs have agreed to modify their game schedule and we are very grateful for their collaboration,” Beesley said.
“It forms part of several travels by FFBB president Jean-Pierre Siutat and myself in recent months.
“It’s important to keep a close link with the players before undertaking the long preparations in the summer that will bring France in form to play at the Eurobasket.”
Collet hopped on the transatlantic flight a mere 24 hours after his side thrashed Boulazac 100-68 to stay top of the Pro A standings, tied with Elan Chalon and Gravelines.
He travels to the USA with the knowledge that France are among the early pre-tournament medal contenders. Les Bleues finished runners-up to Spain in 2011 in Lithuania.
Collet and Beesley will arrive back in France on Wednesday.