SEVEN new players including Harrison Barnes and Draymond Green of NBA champion Golden State have been invited by USA Basketball to join the U.S. men’s team roster for the 2016 Rio De Jainero Olympics.
The other five are Trey Burke, Mike Conley, Jimmy Butler, Tobias Harris, and Victor Oladipo, as reported by Marc Stein of ESPN.com.
The addition of the seven players brings to 41 the total number of members the US men’s team has in its current pool, including the return to active duty of Indiana Pacers star Paul George, who is coming off a horrible leg injury suffered in last year’s training camp for the Fiba World Cup.
The seven new additions are expected to join regulars LaMarcus Aldridge, Carmelo Anthony, Bradley Beal, Tyson Chandler, DeMarcus Cousins, Stephen Curry, Anthony Davis, DeMar DeRozan, Andre Drummond, Kevin Durant, Kenneth Faried, Rudy Gay, Blake Griffin, James Harden, Gordon Hayward, Dwight Howard, Andre Iguodala, Kyrie Irving, LeBron James, Kyle Korver, David Lee, Kawhi Leonard, Damian Lillard, Kevin Love, Paul Millsap, Chandler Parsons, Chris Paul, Mason Plumlee, Derrick Rose, Klay Thompson, John Wall, Russell Westbrook, Deron Williams, and George in training camp in Las Vegas from August 11-13.
According to the same report, USA Basketball is not discounting the possibility of adding some members of the 2008 and 2012 Olympic team, which meant keeping the door open for the likes of the Lakers’ Kobe Bryant and the Heat duo of Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh.
All 41 players have been required to attend the Las Vegas camp where they will be personally evaluated by USA Basketball managing director Jerry Colangelo and coach Mike Krzyzewski as to who will make the final 12-man roster.
Injured players such as Durant, George, Irving, and Love are expected not to join the workouts that culminate in an all-star game on August 13, although they are obliged to be present during the camp.
“It’s going to be a very difficult team to pick and get down to 12,” Colangelo told ESPN.com. “So we need to have them there because we need to find out where we are with everyone.”
Team USA fielded a 12-man roster of Curry, Cousins, Davis, DeRozan, Drummond, Faried, Gay, Harden, Irving, Plumlee, Rose, and Thompson in last year’s FIBA World Cup in Spain and still managed to dominantly win the tournament.
The USA basketball team last lost a major international tournament in 2006 during the FIBA World Championships when it was upset by Greece in the semifinals.
After that, the team has gone on and swept the 2008 and 2012 Olympics and the 2010 and 2014 FIBA World Championships.