Team USA adds Boozer, Chandler, Durant, Kidd, Mike Miller, Oden, Prince and Deron Williams
USA Basketball Men's Senior National Team Managing Director Jerry Colangelo officially announced Wednesday in Las Vegas, Nev., the addition of Carlos Boozer (Utah Jazz); Tyson Chandler (New Orleans Hornets); Kevin Durant (University of Texas); Jason Kidd (New Jersey Nets); Mike Miller (Memphis Grizzlies); Greg Oden (Ohio State University); Tayshaun Prince (Detroit Pistons); and Deron Williams (Utah Jazz) to the Senior National Team roster.
Colangelo also confirmed that seven USA Senior National Team players would be unavailable to compete this summer because of injuries. Those players included Gilbert Arenas (Washington Wizards); Joe Johnson (Atlanta Hawks); Brad Miller (Sacramento Kings); Lamar Odom (Los Angeles Lakers); Chris Paul (New Orleans Hornets); Paul Pierce (Boston Celtics) and Dwyane Wade (Miami Heat).
"One of the reasons for forming and selecting a national team is so you have flexibility. It takes into account the fact that you may have injuries, there may be special circumstances where a player can't perform, but yet you have other players to pull from", explained Colangelo.
"After the recent meeting our coaches had in Phoenix, we decided to add a couple of bigs, in particular for their rebounding and shot blocking abilities. We also decided to add some leadership in the back court and some shooters. We also recognized several players who had outstanding seasons and who we felt were deserving of this opportunity.
"Greg Oden and Kevin Durant represent the class of this season's college ranks and are certainly players we have great interest in, both for the present and for future USA Basketball teams," said Colangelo.
"As I said when we announced the first group of players for the Senior National Team, we're not trying to put a collection of all-stars together but our goal is to put together as good of a basketball team as we possibly can. With the addition of these eight players, I believe we have strengthen our program in several areas, especially leadership, rebounding, defense and shooting,"said USA and Duke University head coach Mike Krzyzewski.
The eight announced players will join 17 players previously named to the USA Basketball Senior National Team and who are expected to participate in 2007. Those USA players include: Carmelo Anthony (Denver Nuggets); Shane Battier (Houston Rockets); Chauncey Billups (Detroit Pistons); Chris Bosh (Toronto Raptors); Bruce Bowen (San Antonio Spurs); Elton Brand (Los Angeles Clippers); Kobe Bryant (Los Angeles Lakers); Kirk Hinrich (Chicago Bulls); Dwight Howard (Orlando Magic); LeBron James (Cleveland Cavaliers); Antawn Jamison (Washington Wizards); Shawn Marion (Phoenix Suns); Adam Morrison (Charlotte Bobcats); Michael Redd (Milwaukee Bucks); J.J. Redick (Orlando Magic); Luke Ridnour (Seattle SuperSonics); and Amaré Stoudemire (Phoenix Suns).
Krzyzewski is leading the USA Senior Team for 2006-2008, while Syracuse University (N.Y.) and Hall of Fame coach Jim Boeheim, Phoenix Suns head mentor Mike D'Antoni and Portland Trail Blazers head coach Nate McMillan will serve as assistant coaches.
USA Basketball also announced Wednesday the 2007 training plans for its Senior National Team. The USA Seniors will conduct a three-hour practice on July 20 and on July 21, and will conclude the mini-camp on July 22 with the 2007 State Farm USA Basketball Challenge that will see the USA Senior Team divided for a Blue-White game. The game will be held at Thomas & Mack Center (game time to be announced).
The USA's July mini-camp will be utilized to determine finalists for the USA squad that will compete Aug. 22 -Sept. 2 in the FIBA Americas Championship 2007 that is also being held in Las Vegas.
Following a three-week break, the selected USA finalists will reconvene in Las Vegas on Aug. 13 for the start of the final phase of the team's 2007 training. The USA team will train daily Aug. 13-21 in preparation of the FIBA Americas Championship 2007.
FIBA Americas Championship 2007
The FIBA Americas Championship 2007, featuring 10 men's national teams, is one of five FIBA Olympic qualifying zone tournaments and will determine the two men's teams from the Americas zone who will earn a qualification spot for the 2008 Olympic Games that are being held Aug. 8-24 in Beijing, China. The third, fourth and fifth place finishers will qualify for the 12-team 2008 FIBA World Olympic Qualifying Tournament, July 7-13, 2008, site TBD, that will qualify the final three teams for the 2008 Olympics.
The USA was placed in the FIBA Americas Championship Group B and will open play against Venezuela on Aug. 22, followed by games against the U.S. Virgin Islands on Aug. 23, Canada on Aug. 25 and Brazil on Aug. 26. Placed into Group A were Argentina, Mexico, Uruguay, Panama and Puerto Rico.
The FIBA Americas Championship 2007 will be conducted in three phases. The first phase features the 10 teams divided into two groups of five teams each for the first round. The teams will play round robin within their groups over five days, with each team scheduled for one day off during the first round.
After conclusion of the first round and establishment of first to fifth places for each group, the top four finishers in each first round group will advance to the second round. Teams finishing in the fifth position will conclude their participation in the tournament. The top four finishing teams of Group A and Group B will then form a single second round group, carrying with them the results obtained in the first phase.
In the second round, each team will play against the four advancing teams from the other first round group. At the conclusion of the second round, the top four placed teams will advance to the third phase, and the bottom four teams will conclude their participation in the tournament.
In accordance with the standings after conclusion of the second round, the semifinals will be held on Sept. 1 and feature the No. 1 ranked team playing the No. 4 team, while the No. 2 ranked team will face the No. 3 ranked team. The finals will be played Sept. 2, with the losers in the semifinals playing for third and fourth, and the semifinals winners playing in the gold medal game for first and second places.
The United States men, gold medalists in 12 of the 15 Olympics in which they have competed, have competed in three of the past four FIBA Americas championships that have been used as the Americas zone qualifying tournament for the Olympics.
The USA teams have compiled a perfect 26-0 record in those three competitions. The USA claimed gold medals in 1992 when the qualifier was played in Portland, Ore., and in 1999 and 2003 when it was staged in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Already qualified for the Olympics as the host country in 1996, the United States did not participate in the 1995 FIBA Americas Olympic Qualifying Tournament.
USA Senior National Team
At the 2006 FIBA World Championship, the USA men compiled an 8-1 record and captured the bronze medal after defeating Argentina 96-81 in the bronze medal game. The USA Senior National Team opened its training July 19 in Las Vegas, and a team of 14 finalists went 5-0 in the team's pre-World Championship tour. Selected to the 2006 USA Basketball Men's World Championship Team were: Anthony, Battier, Bosh, Brand, Hinrich, Howard, James, Jamison, Johnson, Miller, Paul and Wade, while Arenas, Bowen and Stoudemire were named finalists for the team.