Team USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo announced today that Oklahoma City Thunder guard James Harden and future first overall pick Anthony Davis will be added to the USA Men’s Basketball National Team finalist roster.
It was announced earlier this week that Colangelo was going to add more players to the finalist rosters in lieu of recent injuries to four players on the initial list including Derrick Rose and Dwight Howard.
Davis was initially rumored to be among the players considered to be added to the list but it wasn’t until today that Harden’s name came up.
Harden and Davis won’t necessarily make the team but I think both could be very useful additions.
“Being named as a finalist for the USA Basketball National Team is an unbelievable feeling and an opportunity that is truly humbling. It is an honor to be included with such talented players and I look forward to the chance to represent my country this summer,” said Harden.
Harden brings great perimeter shooting, pick-and-roll offense and a high basketball IQ which are all things that are even more valuable in the international game than the NBA game sometimes.
Davis is thin but that won’t be as big of an issue in the Olympics than it will be in the NBA and his shot blocking skills are probably better than any other player on the finalist roster.
Oklahoma City Thunder stars Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook are already on the finalist roster and both should make the team. Durant and Westbrook were also both a big part of the 2010 World Championships team.
With the need to add another three-point threat, Harden could easily become the third Thunder player to make the final roster. His greatest competition will likely be Eric Gordon.