CineSport—Team USA must make roster cuts for Olympic basketball. Will Iguodala, Davis or Gordon be axed? CineSport's Noah Coslov Sheridanhoops.com's Chris Sheridan mull this & tough opponent Team Spain.
With 15 players competing for 12 spots on Coach K’s roster, this week of training will reveal a lot about this year’s team. With a lack of big men and a second scorer, Krzyzewski has some tough decisions to make.
New Orleans Hornets rookie C Anthony Davis is now being considered a lock barring injury, with Chris Bosh having to bow out due to an abdominal injury.
With Dwayne Wade set to have knee surgery, and his desire to be paid to play, Team USA needs another viable scoring option not named LeBron James.
The competition for the #2 shooter position will come down to SGs Eric Gordon and James Harden. The edge in that competition, according to Sheridan, will go to Gordon, who is a better shooter than Harden. Harden is a great defender, but the “Redeem Team” already has a talented defender in SF LeBron James.
Another player who may find himself on the outside looking in is Memphis Grizzlies F Rudy Gay. Coach K already has James and Carmelo Anthony as solid small forward options. Being a team that needs big men and defense, the U.S. may opt for the likes of Tyson Chandler, who has a more intimidating presence down low and Andre Igoudala who has superior defensive skills.
The next question is: Do you bring in a combo guard like Russel Westbrook? The U.S. Coaching staff already has Chris Paul and Deron Williams at the point, but Westbrook has shown he can run and be effective as a shooting guard.
Again, because of the need for low-post players, Westbrook may find himself off of the roster.
With the USA’s biggest competition arguably being Spain, Krzyzewski and his staff need to put the best defensive unit on the floor. The more low-post defenders they have, the better the chance Team USA will be able to close out the paint and out-rebound their opponents.
Spain has a very talented team as well and they are expected to give Team USA a run for their money (that they won’t be paid). With the Gasol Brothers and the addition of PF Serge Ibaka, the Spaniards have a very good all-around team that also has the talent to take the coveted Gold medal.