Young Stars Look To Make An Impression At USA Basketball Showcase

 

LAS VEGAS – Summer hoops continues Thursday on NBA TV (9 p.m. ET) with the USA Basketball Showcase, the culmination of a four-day mini-camp that brought 28 young players into the program that has won two straight Olympic gold medals and 50 straight games.

USA Basketball Showcase – Blue Team
No. Player Pos
46 Harrison Barnes SF
36 DeMarcus Cousins C
42 Anthony Davis PF
41 DeMar DeRozan SG
37 Derrick Favors PF
31 Gordon Hayward SG
22 Damian Lillard PG
62 Greg Monroe PF
34 Klay Thompson SG
51 Dion Waiters SG
26 Kemba Walker PG
50 John Wall PG

Twenty-four of the *28 players will take the floor at the Thomas & Mack Center on Thursday, split into two teams that will be coached by Men’s Senior National Team assistants Tom Thibodeau and Monty Williams.

* Not participating: College players Doug McDermott and Marcus Smart, as well as the Bucks’ Larry Sanders (who turned his ankle in a scrimmage on Tuesday) and the Wizards’ Bradley Beal (who is rehabbing a right fibula injury and has only participated in drills).

With only 40 minutes of game action, the average player will see less than 17 minutes of playing time, which might make it tough for some to make a strong impression on USA Basketball managing director Jerry Colangelo and head coach Mike Krzyzewski, who will be watching courtside.

But Colangelo and Krzyzewski won’t be making any roster selections in the wake of this mini-camp. The next step in the process will be to create a pool of 25-35 players from which to select teams for the 2014 FIBA World Cup in Spain *and the 2016 Olympics in Rio. That won’t happen until next Spring at the earliest and they will be keeping tabs on the entire group during the course of the 2013-14 NBA season.

* If the U.S. wins gold in Spain next summer, they automatically qualify for the Olympics and won’t need to send a team to the 2015 FIBA Americas tournament. If they don’t win gold next summer, they’ll need to field a team in 2015 and finish in the top two at the FIBA Americas tournament to qualify for the Olympics.

USA Basketball Showcase – White Team
No. Player Pos
24 Ryan Anderson PF
20 Mike Conley PG
25 Andre Drummond C
33 Kenneth Faried PF
29 Paul George SF
27 Jrue Holiday PG
23 Kyrie Irving PG
35 DeAndre Jordan C
32 Michael Kidd-Gilchrist SF
21 Ty Lawson PG
39 Chandler Parsons SF
28 Tyler Zeller C

That pool of 25-35 will be made up of USA Basketball veterans, players from this group and a few others that weren’t able to participate this week because of injuries. On Wednesday, Kevin Durant and Kevin Love — who each played in 2010 and 2012 — committed to playing next summer in Spain. And there will likely be other vets that join them.

So there are precious few roster spots available for the players at this camp. Many of them — though they’re stars with their NBA squads — will never play for the National Team. It’s a numbers game and Colangelo and Krzyzewski just have too much talent to choose from.

Of the 24 players who will see action on Thursday, three have the inside track to roster spots next summer. Paul George and Kyrie Irving are simply the best players in camp, while Anthony Davis has USA Basketball experience (at last year’s Olympics) and the skill set needed from U.S. bigs.

Seven of the 24, including Irving, are point guards, who could all be competing with Stephen Curry, Chris Paul, Derrick Rose, Russell Westbrook and Deron Williams for roster spots down the line. Though point guards also play shooting guard in this system, the wings and bigs we see on Thursday certainly have a better shot of making it to Spain or Rio.

This is still a tremendous opportunity for everyone involved, including fans who want to see some high-quality, competitive hoops in the middle of the summer. There’s no better basketball being played in July and even if they aren’t eventually selected for the National Team, these players are making the most of their week in Vegas.

“You just try to take as much advantage of it as you possibly can,” Chandler Parsons said, “learn from it, take it back to your city and try to have a good season next year.”

29 Comments

  1. Randy says:

    Cousin maybe good, but his basketball iq is super low plus he’s pure drama no I rather have Favors

  2. awkaufman says:

    Kyrie
    Demar(if he really has worked on his 3 pt shot) If not Klay Thimpson spread the floor much better
    George
    Davis
    D CUZ

  3. JWEST610 says:

    Irving
    Klay
    George
    Faried
    Davis

  4. Derrick says:

    Pg: John Wall
    Sg: kyrie Irving
    Sf: Paul George
    Pf: Greg Monroe
    C: Anthony Davis

  5. Nick says:

    Starting 5
    Pg-Kyrie
    Sg-Jrue
    Sf-George
    Pf-Monroe
    C-Cousins

    Jrue there over John just because he shoots better and he is a little bit better of a defender and more of a true point. He also has the more size than the other pg besides John. No Sg or Sf is better than the other pg left out on the list.

  6. path0zero says:

    Can’t believe y’alls are leaving john wall out, but anyways it’s your opinion…

    PG- John Wall
    SG- Klay Thompson
    SF- Paul George
    PF- Kenneth Faried
    C- Demarcus Cousins

  7. MoeMoney says:

    PG- Kyrie Irving
    SG- Klay Thompson
    SF- Paul George
    PF- Anthony Davis
    C- Demarcus Cousins

  8. jobdone says:

    Kyrie
    Jrue
    George
    AD
    Faried

    Jrue is prob the best defending PG there, and can shoot 3s, so can kyrie. Faried just has the right attitude and is a good volume rebounder w foot speed and can defend lots of the diff heights shown in international play.

  9. thatruth2u says:

    PG – Kyrie Irving
    SG – Dion Waiters
    SF – Paul George
    PF – Kenneth Faried (tough decision between Faried and Davis)
    C – DeMarcus Cousins

    Paul George is a rising Superstar in the league. Faried is a beast and rising All-Star. Cousins can flat out ball. Irving is a Superstar and will win MVP this year. Watch out for Waiters he’s a pure baller, and the real deal as in has All-Star/Superstar potential. The Cavs will be a dangerous playoff team this year. I like Conley, Wall, and Jordan, but I’m going to have to give the nod to these guys.

  10. Matinho says:

    White Team:
    Kyrie Irving
    Mike Conley
    Paul George
    Kenneth Faried
    Andre Drummond

    Blue Team:
    Damian Lillard
    Klay Thompson
    Harrison Barnes
    Anthony Davis
    DeMarcus Cousins

  11. Jessie223 says:

    PG- Kyrie Irving
    SG- Klay Thompson
    SF- Paul Geroge
    PF- Anthony Davis
    C- Deandre Jordan

  12. jason says:

    After looking at these teams i feel as if this is Kyrie’s game to step up and show really what he can do. I think he will be a huge part of USA basketball for years to come.

  13. nba.fan.MH6 says:

    PG – Jrue Holiday
    SG – Kyrie Irving
    SF – Paul George
    PF – Kenneth Faried
    C – DeMarcus Cousins

  14. Mit says:

    Lillard in irving out

  15. CP3 says:

    PG – Kyrie Irving
    SG – Klay Thompson
    SF – Paul George
    PF – Kenneth Faried
    C – DeAndre Jordan

  16. David says:

    White team looks like the better team but hey, who knows who’s going to win?

  17. Derrick says:

    PG- Kyrie Irving
    SG- Klay Thomson
    SF- Paul George
    PF- Kenneth Faried
    C- Anthony Davis (ya’ll sleeping, on top of pts, he has the most Blocks, Rebounds and Steals amongst all C’s on this list. While injured)
    Bench
    PG- Jrue Holiday
    SG- Dion Waiters
    SF-Chandler Parsons
    PF- Greg Monroe
    C- Demarcus Cousins.

  18. YoungSin says:

    George is an sf but when granger is healthy he plays sg cuz not only do the coach not want him outta the startin line up but they didn’t have the depth to have him or granger off the bench

  19. jay says:

    Pg – kyrie irvin
    Sg – paul george
    Sf- chandler parsons
    Pf- greg monroe
    C- d cousins

    Paul g is a shooting gaurd he just been playin sf while grangier has been hurt

  20. Wow so intense. Never realized how much went into trying to get spots on different teams.

  21. mrshyrockstar says:

    Wow this seems quite confusing. I don’t usually follow basketball but I started to this past year. Very intense

  22. Nore says:

    Wow. Choose your favourite Team by choosing 5 players out of the blue and the white team.

    Here goes mine:

    PG – Kyrie Irving
    SG – John Wall
    SF – Paul george
    PF – Kenneth Faried
    C – Andre Drummond