The 2019 FIBA World Cup is approaching quickly and the roster for the USA basketball team has been officially announced. Unlike previous years, the team is missing a lot more of the bigger name players and the elite stars of the game.
ESPN’s Kevin Pelton recently spoke on ‘The Jump” where he said that the Team USA roster is “by far the weakest roster Team USA has put together.”
“I think this is by far the weakest roster that USA basketball has ever put together since they had professionals in first the Olympics and now the World Cup” said Pelton. “Previously the fewest wins above replacement player by my metric for one of these groups of teams was 92 for the 2010 championship team which did win gold in that World Championship led by Kevin Durant’s performance. This year’s team last year combined for 64 wins above replacement players, that’s about 50% less than the previous least talented team.”
It’s certainly a much different looking team to what was originally expected, NBA stars such as Anthony Davis, James Harden and Damian Lillard all withdrew their names during the process. We’re now left with a much younger Team USA with names such as Jaylen Brown and Kyle Kuzma expecting to lead the 12-man side.
Team USA will still go into the tournament as the red-hot favorites to win but they do have some tough competition in countries such as Serbia, Canada and Australia. The United States of America has won the last two tournaments in 2010 and 2014, they’ll be looking to make it three in a row this year.
The FIBA World Cup begins on the 31st of August in China.