COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 28, 2010) -- Following four days of training and an intra-squad exhibition game that were held July 19-24 in Las Vegas, Nev., USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo today announced that 15 players had been selected as finalists for the 2010 USA World Championship Team.
Named as finalists for the USA World Championship Team were Chauncey Billups (Denver Nuggets); Tyson Chandler (Dallas Mavericks); Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors); Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City Thunder); Rudy Gay (Memphis Grizzlies); Eric Gordon (Los Angeles Clippers); Danny Granger (Indiana Pacers); Jeff Green (Oklahoma City Thunder); Andre Iguodala (Philadelphia 76ers); Brook Lopez (New Jersey Nets); Kevin Love (Minnesota Timberwolves); Lamar Odom (Los Angeles Lakers); Rajon Rondo (Boston Celtics); Derrick Rose (Chicago Bulls); and Russell Westbrook (Oklahoma City Thunder).
The 2010-12 USA National Team coaching staff is led by Duke University's Hall of Fame coach Mike Krzyzewski, and features as USA assistant coaches Syracuse University's Hall of Fame coach Jim Boeheim, New York Knicks head mentor Mike D'Antoni and Portland Trail Blazers head coach Nate McMillan.
The 15 finalists will reassemble Aug. 9 in New York City and train there Aug. 10-16. The official 12-man USA roster that will compete in the 2010 FIBA World Championship must be submitted to FIBA at the technical meeting that normally is held the day prior to the start of the competition.
"We had an outstanding week of training camp in Las Vegas and it is apparent we have a group of guys that are very focused, committed, and desirous of playing for USA Basketball. The identity of the team is still evolving, but it is pretty obvious we're going to be very athletic; we're going to be very strong in the back court; we think our shooting ability is underestimated, we think we've got a number of people who can shoot the ball; and so we're pleased with our progress to date," stated Colangelo.
"We have much more to do in New York and in our upcoming exhibition games as we proceed toward Turkey, but we're excited and enthusiastic about our chances," added Colangelo.
"We're really pleased with the week we had in Vegas. There's such a great spirit to be on the team and to bring these 15 players to New York, they've all earned the opportunity to be there. We have an unconventional team that we're forming, but it's still one that is built with great spirit, athleticism and a little bit more guard oriented than most U.S. teams have been," commented Krzyzewski.
"I like their attitude. They all want to be on the USA team. They want to learn and they're willing to sacrifice for what's best for the whole. There's a great, great spirit of cooperation, an unbelievable spirit of cooperation," Krzyzewski added. USA Basketball opened its 2010 National Team training with a July 19-24 training camp in Las Vegas. The Las Vegas camp was concluded July 24 with the 2010 USA Basketball Showcase, an intra-squad exhibition that saw the USA White Team defeat the USA Blue Team 114-96.
Following a short break, the selected USA finalists will reassemble in New York City to resume training and to take part in the first-ever World Basketball Festival, a four-day celebration of the game's performance and culture hosted by NIKE, Inc. and USA Basketball in New York City. The USA World Championship Team hopefuls will begin their training Aug. 10 with a 12 -3 p.m. (EDT) practice at John Jay College. The World Championship Festival tips off Aug. 12 in Radio City Music Hall with a special showcase featuring the USA Basketball World Championship team finalists and moves uptown to Harlem's legendary Rucker Park basketball courts on Aug. 13 and 14.
The Festival concludes Sunday, Aug. 15, when the USA squad takes on France at Madison Square Garden, 1 p.m. (EDT), in the first game of an exhibition doubleheader. China will meet Puerto Rico at 3:30 p.m. (EDT) in the second contest. Tickets for the exhibition doubleheader, which start at $15, are available on the Web via www.Ticketmaster.com and www.thegarden.com, by phone at 1-800-4-NBA-TIX, and at the box office at Madison Square Garden.
In addition to the game against France at Madison Square Garden, the USA will play three world basketball powers in exhibition games, or "friendlies," in preparation for the 2010 FIBA World Championship. In advance of that tournament, the Americans will meet Lithuania on Aug. 21 and Spain on Aug. 22 in Madrid, Spain, and play Greece in Athens on Aug. 25.
All of these friendlies are part of the new Global Community Cup, which will include all USA Basketball exhibition games played outside of formal international competitions. Along with the games, the Global Community Cup features a social responsibility element that will highlight USA Basketball's commitment to giving back to communities in the U.S. and abroad.