Sixers' Iguodala knows his role with Team USA

Posted: September 10, 2010

The Sixers' Andre Iguodala is keeping an exclusive diary for the Daily News at the World Championships with Team USA. The lastest entry comes after Team USA beat Russia, 89-79, in the world championship quarterfinals in Istanbul. Andre Iguodala had six points, five rebounds and three assists in 13 minutes.

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That was a good win for us. The Russians are a very tough and physical team.

I know people back in Philly are looking at my offensive numbers and don't think that I'm playing that well, but that's not my role on this team. I am here to play defense, score out on the break, get some putbacks. That's how I'll score on this team.

I think Chauncey Billups put it best some time ago when we were all together. He said that there are really only three guys on this team that will play the same way that they will play in the NBA.

Derrick Rose is our lead point guard who can score getting to the basket, who can find the open man and who plays good defense out front on the ball. Those are all the things he does with the Chicago Bulls. Kevin Durant is here to score for us, and he can do that a lot of ways. That's what he does for Oklahoma City. And Tyson Chandler is here to block shots and rebound, and that's what he does in the NBA.

The other guys on the team have to fill in where needed. If there are some nights that certain guys aren't scoring, then someone else will. If we need more rebounding on a certain night, then some guys can concentrate on that. Scoring hasn't been something that's needed from me so far on this team and we're winning so that's all that matters. It doesn't bother me at all not to be scoring a lot. I'll do whatever I have to do in order to win the gold medal.

I know my role in Philadelphia is different, and I'll have my time at training camp to get used to that role again. It won't be a problem for me to pick up that role again.

We've been away for a long time and I miss doing things in Philadelphia that I normally do - like taking long walks in the city and just chilling out. I'm looking forward to getting back and doing that, but I also don't want this to end, at least not until we win the gold medal.

Coach [Doug] Collins texts me after every game . . . I'm sure he's excited that we beat the Russians, especially with what happened to him and the United States team in the 1972 Olympics.

Our goal here isn't finished, yet. We won't be happy unless we win it all. We are a very focused group, and as long as we stay that way I think we'll be OK. I'm just looking forward to wearing a gold medal around my neck on the plane ride home, then relaxing for a little bit before training camp starts.

- As told to Bob Cooney

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