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Krzyzewski squelches report he will return as U.S. coach

Mike Krzyzewski watches his team against Spain during their men's gold medal basketball match at the North Greenwich Arena in London during
Mike Krzyzewski watches his team against Spain during their men's gold medal basketball match at the North Greenwich Arena in London during

(Reuters) - Mike Krzyzewski said on Tuesday his successor as coach of the gold-medal winning U.S. Olympic basketball team will likely be named later this year, underlining his earlier decision to leave the job.

The Duke University coach, speaking to ESPN Radio, denied a report that he might stay on with the U.S. national team after a seven-year run that included two Olympic gold medals and a world championship.

"My stance hasn't changed," Krzyzewski said in the telephone interview. "I've loved, loved, loved, and it's been an honor being with the USA Basketball team.

"And to coach the team and work with (chairman and president Jerry Colangelo) these seven years have been marvelous."

According to Krzyzewski, whose U.S. team beat Spain in consecutive Olympic finals, his successor will likely be named by mid-2013 in preparation for the 2014 world championship in Madrid.

In conjunction with Colangelo, Krzyzewski helped turn around U.S. basketball fortunes after the team's disappointing sixth-place finish at the 2002 world championship in Indianapolis and a bronze medal at the 2004 Olympics in Athens.

Krzyzewski continues to thrive on the collegiate scene with his Duke team boasting a 24-3 record so far this season.

(Reporting by Larry Fine in New York; Editing by Frank Pingue)

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