The last 15 days haven’t been easy for Team USA’s managing director Jerry Colangelo. He has had seven players withdraw from the group that is getting ready for the FIBA World Cup of Basketball that starts camp on August 5th. Coach Gregg Popovich’s first time as Team USA head coach will not have the roster he was expecting. So for those who are keeping score at home, here is where we are before camp begins in Las Vegas:
Who Was Already Out Before The Process Started:
- LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Kawhi Leonard, Stephen Curry, Russell Westbrook, Kyrie Irving, Paul George, Blake Griffin ,Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and DeMarcus Cousins
Players Who Are Injured and Not Considered
- John Wall and Victor Oladipo
Players Who Were On The Original List of 35 and Not on the Roster
- Devin Booker, Mike Conley Jr., Gordon Hayward, DeAndre Jordan, and Isaiah Thomas
Players Who Committed and Then Pulled Out
- Anthony Davis, James Harden, Damian Lillard, DeMar DeRozan, Bradley Beal, Tobias Harris, CJ McCollum and Eric Gordon
- Kevin Love
- Kemba Walker, Andre Drummond, Harrison Barnes, Kyle Kuzma, Brook Lopez, Khris Middleton,Jaylen Brown, Paul Millsap, Donovan Mitchell, Jayson Tatum, Julius Randle, P.J Tucker and Myles Turner (Now Kyle Lowry had Thumb Surgery in July and wants to still play)
Who Has Been Called Upon?
According to reports the following players have been contacted about possibly joining the team:
- Mike Conley Jr
- D’Angelo Russell
- Marcus Smart
- Thaddeus Young
- Josh Richardson
Can They Win?
There is plenty of star power for opposing 31 countries participating. Players like Giannis Antekoumpo, Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray and Rudy Gobert headline a number of NBA stars playing for country’s playing in this summer’s tournament. On top of that, the talent across the world has gotten better and could pose a threat on Team USA in tournament.
The good news is that some of the favorites to beat Team USA will be missing players as well.
- Ben Simmons will not play for Australia (he will play in their exhibitions prior to the World Cup)
- Tristan Thompson and Andrew Wiggins will not play for Canada
- Nikola Vucevic is uncertain for Serbia
Even though the above group of players who are committed at the current moment are extremely talented. The easiest route to the first ever three-peat in the FIBA World Cup history would be to have our best group of players available.