As usual, the United States of America basketball national team is deep and talented.
For the upcoming FIBA Basketball World Cup in Spain in August, Team USA has identified a 19-player pool that will join the training camp leading up to the final selection for this year’s world championships.
Here’s a per position look at the US pool:
Point Guards (4): Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors); Kyrie Irving (Cleveland Cavaliers); Damian Lillard (Portland Trail Blazers); Derrick Rose (Chicago Bulls);
Shooting Guards (5): James Harden (Houston Rockets); Bradley Beal (Washington Wizards); DeMar DeRozan (Toronto Raptors); Chandler Parsons (Dallas Mavericks); Klay Thompson (Golden State Warriors)
Small Forward (4): Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City Thunder); Paul George (Indiana Pacers); Gordon Hayward (Utah Jazz); Kyle Korver (Atlanta Hawks);
Power Forward (4): Kevin Love (Minnesota Timberwolves); Blake Griffin (Los Angeles Clippers); Andre Drummond (Detroit Pistons); Kenneth Faried (Denver Nuggets);
Center (2): Anthony Davis (New Orleans Pelicans); DeMarcus Cousins (Sacramento Kings)
Aside from the obvious—depth and skills—Team USA players are known for their versatility as most can shift from one position to another especially in international competition.
For example, guards like Curry and Lillard have reliable outside shots that they can easily slide to the 2-spot; and big men like Love and Griffin can move to the C-spot if the Americans want to go faster but without sacrificing much of the the team ceiling.
Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski, who has a 46-1 record with the national team since 2006, will once again handle the squad.
“It’s valuable to have some veteran leadership who has won gold at the highest levels internationally. The list also includes some of the most exciting young players who could definitely contribute to this team,” said Krzyzewski to the official website of USA Basketball.
“Myself and the entire coaching staff are excited to get things underway and as we’ve done each summer our team will strive to represent the United States with respect and a commitment to excellence that hopefully will make every American proud.”
Team 19-man crew wil participate in the Las Vegas training camp as part of Team USA's preparation for the World Cup in Spain.
Which players deserve to be in the final line-up? Will the Americans romp through the competition in Spain once again and easily bag the gold? Or can any country challenge them this year?