Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook will be representing their country in the 2012 Olympics this summer for Team USA Basketball. USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo announced that nine of the 12 roster spots are secured.
Durant and Westbrook are among the nine along with LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Kevin Love and Tyson Chandler.
That will leave three spots left for five players to compete for. The five players left are Blake Griffin, Andre Iguodala, Rudy Gay, Eric Gordon and James Harden.
Many potentials have dropped out from the team, most recently No. 1 overall pick Anthony Davis and Lamar Odom.
“We will not be adding anybody,” Colangelo told Fox Sports. “We feel good with what we have.”
When you look at the nine secured spots, only two of those players play the four or five in the NBA in Love and Chandler. LeBron, Durant and Anthony could each play the four in international play but one would still believe Team USA needs some more size.
Griffin should make the team because of this and possibly Gay as well, who has more size than Iguodala and is also a better perimeter shooter.
That will leave one last spot for Gordon, Iguodala and Harden to battle for. The roster needs a shooter which would make Gordon or Harden most appealing but since they will be so small, a player like Iguodala could also be a good choice.
Right now, Gordon is probably the better spot-up shooter than Harden and would most likely get the nod but people shouldn’t underestimate Harden. It’s easy to remember his play in the NBA Finals and forget what he did this season before that.
Harden really made a leap this year inserting himself into “Top 5 SG’s in the NBA” conversations. The fact that Durant and Westbrook are going too could make the choice of Harden more likely as well.
“I’m very confident with the roster we will have,” Colangelo said. “We have a few days now to decide if we want a shooter, you’ve got Harden. Do we want a defensive specialist? There’s Iguodala. And Rudy Gay is versatile. He played (center at times) for us in the World Championships. We have people who are versatile.”
The final roster will be revealed Saturday night at 7 p.m. EST on NBA TV.
Topics: 2012 Olympics, Andre Iguodala, Anthony Davis, Blake Griffin, Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Eric Gordon, Final Roster, James Harden, Jerry Colangelo, Kevin Durant, Kevin Love, Kobe Bryant, Lamar Odom, LeBron James, London, Rudy Gay, Russell Westbrook, Team USA Basketball, Tyson Chandler