HoopsHype USA Basketball rumors

September 1, 2014 Updates

”We won and we won because we deserved to win,” said USA coach Mike Krzyzewski (Duke University). “Our guys played their hearts out, and that was a big win for us against a really good team.” Sportando

August 31, 2014 Updates

Plumlee played four years under Team USA head coach Mike Krzyzewski at Duke, and he's a Nike guy. These two facts were bound to be mentioned when discussing his surprising selection. After a 114-55 -- not a typo -- win over Finland on Saturday, he addressed the matter. "I'm very proud that I went to Duke and I'm very proud that I wear Nike, and that has nothing to do with it," Plumlee said, via Ball in Europe. "If you were at our practices and our training camp, anybody that was there, they would see why I made the team." CBSSports.com

August 29, 2014 Updates

“I love playing for USA Basketball,” Davis said in a conference call from Spain with reporters. “I think some guys look at it is as you don’t get paid, so you don’t have to play, or whatever. But that’s their own opinions. I love playing here, I love playing the game of basketball. Any time I get a chance to represent my country, especially for our servicemen and women who do so much for us, it’s a great opportunity to kind of show your appreciation. I love doing things like this. I look forward to future years when I get a chance to play with USA Basketball.” NBA.com

With the FIBA World Cup approaching this weekend, Davis said playing for his country does more than make him a better player. It's also a way to spend his offseason doing what he loves while showing his appreciation for others who've made greater sacrifices, and taken far greater risks, in the name of patriotism. "I love playing for USA basketball. Some guys look at it as they don't get paid, so you don't have to play or whatever," Davis said on a conference call with reporters on Thursday. "I love playing the game of basketball and any time I get a chance to represent my country, especially for all the servicemen and women who do so much for us, I think it's a great opportunity to show your appreciation. "So I love doing things like this and I look forward to future years playing for USA Basketball." USA Today Sports

August 28, 2014 Updates
August 27, 2014 Updates

Harden’s responsibilities increased once more when Kevin Durant, his close friend and former Oklahoma City Thunder teammate, backed out of his commitment, citing fatigue and not the injury to George as the reason. That left the lefty Harden as the only first-team all-NBA player remaining on the squad. The earlier withdrawals of Kevin Love and Russell Westbrook also meant that Harden and Anthony Davis were the only holdovers from the 2012 London Olympics team. “Right now, I think I would look to Harden as that leader,” USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo said as his team continues to prepare for the tournament in which the winner earns an automatic berth in the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. “Harden is kind of a natural leader and he seems to be willing to accept that role. And you can just kind of feel it and sense. He’s the one.” Washington Post

August 26, 2014 Updates

It certainly wasn't a defense and not even an explanation, but in an interview with a North Carolina newspaper, Mike Krzyzewski talks about why he chose his former center for Team USA ... and how USA Basketball only decided at the last minute to choose a select team to practice against the senior team. "We weren't even sure we were going to have a Select team for the training in Las Vegas, so that was a last-minute addition, just having a Select team," Krzyzewski told Bret Stretlow of The Fayetteville Observer. "The Select team did a terrific job, and Mason all of a sudden came to the forefront and made us say, 'Shouldn't we look at this guy? We have the perimeter, but what about the bigs?' NetsDaily

August 24, 2014 Updates
August 23, 2014 Updates

Just a few hours after a 112-86 victory over Puerto Rico at Madison Square Garden on Friday and six days before it needed to, the U.S. National Team finalized its roster for the FIBA World Cup in Spain. In a bit of a surprise, two players – DeMar DeRozan and Andre Drummond – who didn’t play on Friday made the final roster. Drummond is the fourth center on the team, while DeRozan made the cut over Chandler Parsons and Kyle Korver. He offers more playmaking and explosive scoring ability than the other two. In addition to Korver and Parsons, Damian Lillard and Gordon Hayward did not make the 12-man roster. NBA.com

USA Basketball National Team Managing Director Jerry Colangelo announced Friday night the 12 players who will represent the United States at the 2014 FIBA (International Basketball Federation) Basketball World Cup that is being held Aug. 30-Sept. 14 in Spain. The player announcement followed the USA's112-86 exhibition victory over Puerto Rico Friday evening at Madison Square Garden. Named as members of the official 2014 USA Basketball World Cup Team were: DeMarcus Cousins (Sacramento Kings); Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors); Anthony Davis (New Orleans Pelicans); DeMar DeRozan (Toronto Raptors); Andre Drummond (Detroit Pistons); Kenneth Faried (Denver Nuggets); Rudy Gay (Sacramento Kings); James Harden (Houston Rockets); Kyrie Irving (Cleveland Cavaliers); Mason Plumlee (Brooklyn Nets); Derrick Rose (Chicago Bulls); and Klay Thompson (Golden State Warriors). USA Basketball

“Since taking over the USA Basketball Men’s National Team program in 2005, this was without doubt the most difficult selection process we’ve gone through,” said Colangelo. “I can’t stress enough the outstanding effort and commitment that has been given by each finalist. I also want to make it clear that this is not just about talent – each player is incredibly talented and each player offered us unique skills. In the end it was about assembling the best team, selecting guys who we felt would be able to best play the kind of style we envision this team playing.” “The first thing is we are very pleased with the overall effort of every player who was a part of the process,” said Mike Krzyzewski, USA head coach and Duke University’s Naismith Hall of Fame mentor. “To select twelve was difficult, because our pool is so good. As we go forward, we not only go forward as twelve, we go forward as a pool for USA Basketball. As a staff we want to thank the players who are not going forward. “I’m excited about the 12 players selected and feel we have excellent versatility and the makings of a really good defensive team.” USA Basketball

August 22, 2014 Updates

For the second time in three games, Andre Drummond didn't play in one of Team USA's exhibitions. That might not bode well for Drummond's chances of making the team that will travel to Spain for the upcoming World Cup. The Detroit Pistons center is battling for the No. 3 center's job behind Anthony Davis of the New Orleans Hornets and DeMarcus Cousins of the Sacramento Kings. And despite scoring 12 points in a rout over the Dominican Republic, he didn't get off the bench in Friday's 112-86 victory over Puerto Rico at Madison Square Garden. Booth Newspapers

There's a powerful person behind Derrick Rose's participation with USA Basketball that prefers to remain behind-the-scenes. Jen Swanson, whom the Bulls hired last summer as their Director of Sports Performance, is more qualified than anyone to monitor Rose's rehabilitation, knees and body. And the fact she is traveling with USA Basketball and in consistent communication with Rose, who returned to practice Thursday after three days of rest, is an important security blanket for the Bulls, who still believe reward outweighs risk in this endeavor. "Jen's doing a great job of making sure I'm coming in every day and stretching and trying to get my flexibility right through my whole body," Rose said during the Las Vegas minicamp in late July. "She stays on me, and I'm happy the Bulls got her here." Centre Daily Times

The Bulls hired Swanson away from Athletes' Performance in Los Angeles after she worked extensively with Rose during his rehabilitation from his May 2012 surgery to repair the torn ACL in his left knee. She quickly developed a strong rapport with players during her first season and then unexpectedly developed an even stronger bond with Rose when he tore his right meniscus in November 2013. "What she has done with the team has sort of been the next step for our league," Bulls coach and Team USA assistant Tom Thibodeau said. "It's a piece that probably was missing. You have a trainer. You have a strength coach. And now you have a person who works with both and where if you're weak in a certain area, they can sort of lock into that. So I think she has been a big plus for us." In a rare interview last October, Swanson detailed her reasoning for leaving her successful career as a physical therapist who worked with a wide variety of professional athletes. Centre Daily Times

August 21, 2014 Updates

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