Greece's opening game in the 2008 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament is July 14, and the tourney runs through July 20.

Training camp for the Jazz's Rocky Mountain Revue opens July 14, and the NBA summer league itself runs July 18-25.

Awkward?

It sure seems to be for American-born Kosta Koufos, the Jazz's first-round selection out of Ohio State in Thursday's NBA Draft — and a dual Greek-U.S. citizen who also belongs to Greece's national team.

Greece is hosting the qualifying tourney in Athens and is among 12 countries hoping to win one of three available berths for the upcoming Summer Olympics in Beijing.

Jazz brass on Friday told Koufos they fully expect him to take part in the Revue, which they consider essential to the development of young players.

"That's what we expect from our draft pick," general manager Kevin O'Connor said. "We've had a conversation with him about it."

Yet the 7-foot center seems to be holding out hope he can play in China — should Greece qualify.

"I'm still keeping my options open for the Olympics with the team," he said. "We haven't talked about anything yet. But right now the NBA is a priority for me. Whatever the Utah Jazz need me to, I'm willing to do."

Asked specifically if he'll play in the qualifying tournament, Koufos said, "I don't think so. I don't know yet. Right now it's up in the air. We haven't confirmed anything with the team or organization, so as of now it's day-to-day."

Asked specifically if the Jazz expect him to be at the Revue, as O'Connor said the Jazz told him they do, Koufos said, "I don't know anything about that yet, so it's up in the air."

Then he politely apologized.

It's possible that Koufos — whose mother was born in Greece — simply hasn't informed the Greek team of the new demands on his schedule and that he wanted to avoid informing them through a media report.

It's also possible Koufos is hoping Greece will keep him on its 12-man roster but try to get through the qualifying event without him, then allow him to catch up with the team in time for the Olympics.

Koufos, 19, played on silver medal-winning Greece's team in last summer's Under-18 European championships, earning tourney MVP honors while averaging 26.5 points, 13.0 rebounds and 3.5 blocks.

TOMIC HOPEFUL: Also hoping to claim one of the three Olympic qualifying berths in Athens is Croatia, whose roster includes Jazz second-round draft choice Ante Tomic.

The 7-foot-1 center is under contract in Croatia and the Jazz have no plans to bring him to Utah anytime soon, so he won't be expected to take part in the Revue.

Tomic and undrafted countryman Damjan Rudez were away from the national team while spending time in the U.S. preparing for the draft, but now they'll return to a club coached by Jasmin Repese.

Repese evidently thinks Tomic should have waited a year before making himself draft-eligible.

"I am aware that players have their own interest, so I didn't stop them, although I think Tomic went a year too soon," he said, according to FIBA.com. "He could go one year later, but, anyway, he had my full support."

MISC.: Croatia is in the same qualifying group as Puerto Rico, whose roster, FIBA.com reported Friday, will include ex-Jazz point guard Carlos Arroyo. Arroyo finished last season with the Orlando Magic but will be a free agent in July ... Former Jazz/BYU center Rafael Araujo is on Brazil's roster for the qualifying tourney ... Already qualified for Olympic play are point guard Deron Williams and power forward Carlos Boozer of Team USA, Russian forward Andrei Kirilenko and ex-Utah point guard Raul Lopez of Spain ... Williams' and Boozer's U.S. team will be profiled in a five-part documentary titled "Road To Redemption." The series, produced by NBA Entertainment, will debut with a special one-hour episode airing Wednesday on ESPN2.


E-mail: [email protected]