Connect with us

NBA & NFL

LeBron James, Stephen Curry lead finalists for Olympic men’s basketball roster

Published

on

Lesbron James and steven Curry

LeBron James, Stephen Curry and every active American superstar in the NBA, plus the injured Kevin Durant, headline 44 finalists for the U.S. Olympic men’s basketball team. It’s USA Basketball’s largest player pool for 12 roster spots since it began naming finalists in 2008.

The full list of finalists:

Bam Adebayo (Miami Heat)
LaMarcus Aldridge (San Antonio Spurs)
Harrison Barnes (Sacramento Kings)
Bradley Beal (Washington Wizards)
Devin Booker (Phoenix Suns)
Malcolm Brogdon (Indiana Pacers)
Jaylen Brown (Boston Celtics)
Jimmy Butler (Miami Heat)
Mike Conley Jr. (Utah Jazz)
Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors)
Anthony Davis (Los Angeles Lakers)
DeMar DeRozan (San Antonio Spurs)
Andre Drummond (Cleveland Cavaliers)
Kevin Durant (Brooklyn Nets)
Paul George (Los Angeles Clippers)
Draymond Green (Golden State Warriors)
James Harden (Houston Rockets)
Montrezl Harrell (Los Angeles Clippers)
Joe Harris (Brooklyn Nets)
Tobias Harris (Philadelphia 76ers)
Gordon Hayward (Boston Celtics)
Dwight Howard (Los Angeles Lakers)
Brandon Ingram (New Orleans Pelicans)
Kyrie Irving (Brooklyn Nets)
LeBron James (Los Angeles Lakers)
Kyle Kuzma (Los Angeles Lakers)
Kawhi Leonard (Los Angeles Clippers)
Damian Lillard (Portland Trail Blazers)
Brook Lopez (Milwaukee Bucks)
Kevin Love (Cleveland Cavaliers)
Kyle Lowry (Toronto Raptors)
JaVale McGee (Los Angeles Lakers)
Khris Middleton (Milwaukee Bucks)
Donovan Mitchell (Utah Jazz)
Victor Oladipo (Indiana Pacers)
Chris Paul (Oklahoma City Thunder)
Mason Plumlee (Denver Nuggets)
Marcus Smart (Boston Celtics)
Jayson Tatum (Boston Celtics)
Klay Thompson (Golden State Warriors)
Myles Turner (Indiana Pacers)
Kemba Walker (Boston Celtics)
Russell Westbrook (Houston Rockets)
Derrick White (San Antonio Spurs)

Durant, the leading scorer on the 2012 and 2016 Olympic teams, will miss the entire NBA season after rupturing an Achilles in June. Every eligible 2020 NBA All-Star is a finalist except Trae Young.

Other notable missing names: Four-time Olympian Carmelo Anthony (retired from international play after Rio), Rio Olympians DeMarcus Cousins (out with an ACL tear) and DeAndre Jordan, Blake Griffin (knee surgery in January) and John Wall (out since last February due to Achilles surgery).

The final team, expected to be named by selection committee in June, will play with the memory of Kobe Bryant. Bryant was a leader on the 2008 and 2012 Olympic teams that brought the U.S. back to its dominant place in global basketball.

Bryant attended last September’s FIBA World Cup, where the U.S. finished seventh, its worst-ever senior national team tournament result. After that failure, many NBA superstars declared intent to play at the Olympics.

kevin durant stare

“It’s not a matter of the rest of the world catching up to the U.S.,” Bryant said at the World Cup in China. “The rest of the world has been caught up for quite some time. It’s to the point where us in the U.S. are going to win some, going to lose some. There’s just great basketball being played. Whether it’s Redeem [Team] two, no matter what team it is, it’s not going to be easy.”

After the U.S.’ FIBA World Cup disaster, James stopped short of saying he planned to be in Tokyo. At 35, he will be older come the Tokyo Opening Ceremony than all but one previous U.S. Olympic men’s basketball player (Larry Bird).

Anthony Davis and Lesbron James

“Team USA? Um … I don’t know,” James said on Sept. 27. “See how I can do throughout this season. I will address that at some point, hopefully have an opportunity to have a conversation with coach [Gregg Popovich].”

James, a teammate of Bryant’s in 2008 and 2012, skipped the 2016 Rio Games to rest after leading the Cleveland Cavaliers to an NBA title. He had been named one of 30 finalists earlier in the year. Other stars also missed the Rio Olympics for various reasons, including Curry, Harden and Westbrook.

In April 2018, James, Durant and Curry headlined the initial 35-player national team pool.

From 1992-2004, a USA Basketball committee chose Olympic teams without naming large pools of finalists. There were 33 finalists in 2008, 22 in 2012 and 30 in 2016.

LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Steph Curry Top Preliminary Team USA Olympic Roster

Lesbron James

The 44 finalists to join the U.S. men’s basketball team at the Tokyo Olympics this summer were announced Sunday night.

Unsurprisingly, LeBron James, Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant are in the running. Other notable names are Houston Rockets All-Star duo James Harden and Russell Westbrook, Portland Trail Blazers All-Star Damian Lillard and reigning NBA Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard.

Durant has been out since Game 5 of the 2019 NBA Finals with a ruptured Achilles. The Golden State Warriors ultimately lost to a Toronto Raptors side led by Leonard before Leonard signed with the Los Angeles Clippers and KD went to the Brooklyn Nets last summer.

However, New Orleans Pelicans rookie No. 1 overall pick Zion Williamson, Memphis Grizzlies rookie second overall pick Ja Morant and Atlanta Hawks All-Star point guard Trae Young were absent from the list.

Twenty-nine of the 44 finalists have combined for 31 Olympic or FIBA Basketball World Cup gold medals.

The final 12-player roster will be announced at a later date.

The lead-up to the 2019 FIBA World Cup proved how much can change from the preliminary roster to the final roster. Harden, Lillard, Bradley Beal, Anthony Davis, Tobias Harris, Kevin Love, CJ McCollum and JJ Redick were among stars to withdraw their names from consideration for the FIBA World Cup.

McCollum opened up on Adrian Wojnarowski’s ESPN podcast The Woj Pod as to why so many American stars were skipping the international tournament:

The U.S. finished seventh at the World Cup after losing 89-79 to France in the quarterfinals on Sept. 11.

Later in September, Curry cemented his interest in representing the U.S. at the 2020 Olympics during an interview with ESPN’s Rachel Nichols: “Definitely wanna go. I’ve never been on the Olympic team. I’ve been on two World Cup championship gold-medal teams. But the Olympics is the experience that I want. And next year will hopefully be it.”

Curry has been sidelined since Oct. 30 with a broken hand that required surgery.

Around the same time as Curry’s comments, fellow Golden State Warriors All-Star Klay Thompson told The Athletic’s Marcus Thompson II that he “would love to be on the Olympic team” despite suffering a torn ACL during Game 6 of the 2019 NBA Finals.

Lesbron James and opponent

Lillard also told News.com.au’s James McKern he plans “on being a part of that.”

However, USA Basketball managing director Jerry Colangelo told reporters he would not forget who decided to skip last year’s FIBA World Cup:

“I can only say, you can’t help but notice and remember who you thought you were going to war with and who didn’t show up. … All we could have done, and we did it, is get the commitments from a lot of players. So with that kind of a hand, you feel reasonably confident that you’re going to be able to put a very good representative team on the court. No one would have anticipated the pullouts that we had.”

The Americans are three-time defending Olympic gold medalists. James was a member of the 2008 and 2012 gold-medal-winning squads, but the 2016 winners were led by Carmelo Anthony and Durant, while no other player on that roster had previously been to the Olympics.







Serena Williams says:"They are so prominent strong and vital to my life"
Living3 days ago

Serena Williams says:”They are so prominent strong and vital to my life”

Olympia smile
News4 weeks ago

Serena Williams cries out, ‘Is Alexis Olympia ok? Is there something wrong with my daughter?

Serena Williams US Open crying
News2 weeks ago

Serena Williams’s Husband Accidentally Sent a Super Flirty Message on Twitter To Another Woman

serena williams hot pict
Fashion4 weeks ago

Serena Williams Looks Astonishing As She Puts On a VERY Leggy Display In a Tiny Black Plunging Leotard

Ronda Rousey with her husband Travis Browne..
News5 days ago

Ronda Rousey Fought Her Husband Travis Browne Amid WWE return

Serena Williams's husband, Alexis Ohanian
News4 weeks ago

VIDEO: Alexis Ohanian surprises wife Serena Williams with four billboards of daughter

Serena Williams tennis ace
News4 weeks ago

Serena Williams Slams Fans “I’m not a Pushy Mom” Olympia Has to Learn Tennis

Serena Williams and baby Olympia
News4 weeks ago

“Is there something wrong with my daughter?” — Serena Williams cries out in distress

Serena Williams cries
News3 weeks ago

Serena Williams thinks something is wrong with Olympia — Serena Williams frets over daughter’s health

Serena Williams and Olympia Alexis
News4 weeks ago

WATCH: Serena Williams Stays In The Background As Daughter Continues Tennis Lessons

Andy Murray interviewed talks about wife, family, foods and diet
News3 weeks ago

“There is one person in particular that helped me” — Andy Murray finally opens up

Alexis Ohanian and Olympia Ohanian
News3 weeks ago

Alexis Ohanian’s wife cries out, “Is Alexis Olympia ok? Is there something wrong with my daughter?”

News1 week ago

Will Serena Williams give birth to another baby soon? — Serena Williams confirms

Serena Williams near
Fashion2 weeks ago

Now, Serena Williams ‘Thankful’ For Her ‘Thick’ Figure More Than Ever

Serena Williams
News3 weeks ago

Serena Williams Has the Perfect Response for People Who Call Her ‘Manly’