COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (January 16, 2012) – Eight 2008 Olympic gold medalists, 10 members of the 2010 USA World Championship gold medal winning team, one national team player and one newcomer to the USA Basketball National Team were among the 20 finalists named today for the 2012 U.S. Olympic men’s basketball team by USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo. The official 12-man U.S. Olympic team roster will be announced later this year.
Named as a finalist for the 2012 USA team were: LaMarcus Aldridge (Portland Trail Blazers); Carmelo Anthony (New York Knicks); Chauncey Billups (Los Angeles Clippers); Chris Bosh (Miami Heat); Kobe Bryant (Los Angeles Lakers); Tyson Chandler (New York Knicks); Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City Thunder); Rudy Gay (Memphis Grizzlies); Eric Gordon (New Orleans Hornets); Blake Griffin (Los Angeles Clippers); Dwight Howard (Orlando Magic); Andre Iguodala (Philadelphia 76ers); LeBron James (Miami Heat); Kevin Love (Minnesota Timberwolves); Lamar Odom (Dallas Mavericks); Chris Paul (Los Angeles Clippers); Derrick Rose (Chicago Bulls); Dwyane Wade (Miami Heat); Russell Westbrook (Oklahoma City Thunder); and Deron Williams (New Jersey Nets). Griffin was also officially added to the USA Basketball National Team roster.
The 2012 USA coaching staff is led by Duke University’s Hall of Fame coach Mike Krzyzewski, and serving as USA assistant coaches are Syracuse University’s Hall of Fame coach Jim Boeheim, New York Knicks head coach Mike D’Antoni, and Portland Trail Blazers head coach Nate McMillan.
“The USA Basketball Men’s National Team program has come a long way as the elite list of players who are now part of our program shows. The selected finalists are a very, very talented group; the depth of the talent is extraordinary. This selection decision was as difficult of a challenge as I’ve faced since I took on the USA National Team program in 2005,” said Colangelo, who has served as the managing director of the USA Men’s National Team since 2005.
“I feel like we have an outstanding blend of talents from the 2008 Olympic and 2010 World Championship teams that won gold. Reducing to the official roster limit of 12 players will be an even tougher decision, but we’ll evaluate how guys play during the 2011-12 NBA season and as we’ve done with our teams in the past, we’ll attempt to select the very best team we can.”
“Jerry has built an extremely deep and talented USA National Team roster of 35 players and I want to thank each player for their incredible commitment to being part of USA Basketball. Reducing to 20 players was unbelievably difficult,” stated Krzyzewski, who has coached USA National Teams to a sterling 48-1 record since 2006.
“Aside from the obvious special basketball talents that all of these players possess, what struck me most about the finalists was their commitment to USA Basketball and the international basketball experience they have compiled. Among our 20 finalists, we have two players who possess 55 or more games of international experience, two with 40 or more international games under their belts and eight others who have played between 23 and 38 international games – that’s a lot of experience, which is going to be extremely valuable.
“These players have helped restore the winning tradition of USA Basketball while also gaining the respect of people around the world for the manner in which they have done it,” added Krzyzewski.
Three of the finalists are two-time Olympic medalists, including Anthony (2004 bronze and 2008 gold), James (2004 bronze and 2008 gold) and Wade (2004 bronze and 2008 gold).
Eight of the selected finalists were members of the 2008 U.S. Olympic team that compiled an unblemished record of 8-0 and captured gold in Beijing, including Anthony, Bosh, Bryant, Howard, James, Paul, Wade and Williams. Four finalists – Anthony, James, Odom and Wade – were part of the 2004 U.S. Olympic team that earned the bronze medal.
Ten finalists were members of the 2010 USA World Championship squad that went 9-0 and captured gold in Istanbul, Turkey. Billups, Chandler, World Championship MVP Durant, Gay, Gordon, Iguodala, Love, Odom, Rose and Westbrook were all members of the USA World Championship Team.
The finalists represent 14 different NBA teams, with the Miami Heat and Los Angeles Clippers leading the way with three players each; while the New York Knicks and Oklahoma City Thunder each have two players among the 20; and the Chicago Bulls, Dallas Mavericks, Los Angeles Lakers, Memphis Grizzlies, Minnesota Timberwolves, New Jersey Nets, New Orleans Hornets, Orlando Magic, Philadelphia 76ers and Portland Trail Blazers each are represented by one player.
Eighteen of the finalists possess impressive international experience with Anthony leading the way with 59 games of international experience. He is followed by James (55), Williams (47), Wade (40), Howard (38), Paul (37), Bosh (32), Billups (30), Odom (28), Chandler (25), Bryant (24), Gay (23), Durant (17), Iguodala (16), Rose (16), Gordon (15), Love (15) and Westbrook (15). Aldridge, who was a member of the 2008 USA Select Team that trained against the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team, and Griffin, who is the youngest finalist at 22-years-old, have not played in an international game.
The USA’s complete training schedule will be released at a later date.
What’s good everyone? Check out the new Tiffanys ring me and my Team USA bros received for winning the 2010 FIBA World Championship tournament. I picked mine up during a ceremony at All-Star Weekend at the Tiffanys in Beverly Hills. Months later and this still feels so good!
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Dec. 15, 2010) – After helping the USA earn a 9-0 record and the gold medal at the 2010 FIBA World Championship and taking home tournament MVP honors in the process, Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City Thunder) today was announced as the 2010 USA Basketball Male Athlete of the Year.
“It means a lot,” Durant said. “My goal was to represent my country to the best of my ability. I really appreciate all of the coaches and players that I got to share that experience with. I am very humbled by this honor.”
Durant averaged a team-best and U.S. World Championship scoring record 22.8 points per game to help lead the USA to the FIBA World Championship gold medal Aug. 28 – Sept. 12 in Istanbul, Turkey. Named MVP of the tournament, he also was a member of the five-person All-World Championship Team.
“Kevin brought maturity and a winning mindset to every practice and every game last summer,” said Mike Krzyzewski, USA Men’s National Team and Duke University head coach. “He was a critical part of our success, and his teammates wanted him to have the ball in critical situations. They knew he’d deliver, and he did repeatedly. Despite his level of accomplishment at such a young age, Kevin wants to be a better player at both ends of the court. He’s motivated, and there’s no ceiling on his game. He’s a very special player and deserving of any honors he receives.”
Durant will be submitted for the U.S. Olympic Committee’s 2010 SportsMan of the Year Award, which is expected to be announced in January. The selection was made by the USA Basketball Board of Directors.
“Kevin’s performance during the FIBA World Championship was incredible,” said Jim Tooley, USA Basketball Executive Director/CEO. “He set several U.S. World Championship records, and was an integral part of our young team. USA Basketball is proud of Kevin and the entire team’s effort.”
Starting in all nine games played, Durant also contributed 6.1 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 1.4 steals per game in a team-high 28.2 minutes per game. He shot a sizzling 55.6 percent from the field (74-133 FGs), 44.6 percent from 3-point (26-57 3pt FGs) and 91.2 percent from the free throw line (31-34 FTs).
After a 16 year drought, KD and the USA Basketball squad were able to secure the 2010 FIBA World Championship.
KD’s performance in the tournament was nothing short of spectacular. In the last three games of the tournament he scored 33, 38 and 28 points against Russia, Lithuania and Turkey, respectively.
The 38 points in the semi-final game against Lithuania set a new USA Basketball record for most points scored in the FIBA World Championship tournament, while his seven three pointers in the gold medal game against Turkey set a new FIBA World Championship record. KD also finished the tournament with U.S. FIBA Worlds record 22.8 points in the event, shattering the 20.2 mark Luther Burden put up in 1974.
KD’s performance earned him a spot on the FIBA World Championship All-Tournament team and the tournament’s most valuable player award.
Congrats to KD and the entire USA Basketball team!
For photos for KD during the FIBA Tournament click HERE.
During the FIBA World Championship tournament, KD has been writing various names and numbers on his USAB Edition Nike Zoom Hyperfuse shoes. Check out this video where KD tells us the meaning behind all of the names and numbers he’s been writing on his shoes during the FIBA World Championship.
WhatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s good everybody? I’m out here in New York City for another week of training camp with USA Basketball before the World Championship in Turkey later this month. I took a train into the city from D.C. last night, so I’m ready to go.
This is going to be a lot of fun. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m looking forward to competing. I never had a chance to compete for a gold medal before and thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s why IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m going to go out there and play my heart out and have fun. This will be a good little warm-up before going into the regular season, too, so weÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re all excited about representing our country as well.
The USA coaching staff actually sent us home from Las Vegas with a FIBA regulation basketball to practice with and IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve been working out with it every day these last couple of weeks. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m just trying to get more comfortable with it since itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a different basketball than what we have in the NBA. The FIBA ball is just bouncier, more slippery and it doesnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t have as much grip as an NBA ball. ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s not what IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m used to. And itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a little lighter as well. A few more days and hopefully IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll be good.
IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve been prepping for the week by working out at home, mostly with Jeff Green and Corey Brewer. WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve been having some good workouts and theyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve definitely gotten me a lot better these last couple of weeks heading into training camp.
IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m sure you all know IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll be out here with some of my Thunder family. Me, Jeff and Russell are trying to make the team that will head overseas in a week. We just want to go out there and try to help contribute. It would be cool to see all three of us out there representing the U.S. but weÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re just going to play our hardest and by the end of the week, whatever happens, happens. Those guys are my brothers and it would be great to represent out country together. WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll see what happens.
IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m going to try to get a few more blogs up this week in NYC. WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll have a lot going on from practices to the World Basketball Festival, so stay tuned!
Interested in catching KD and his USA Basketball teammates take on France at Madison Square Garden for the World Basketball Festival? Get your tickets for the August 15 international basketball doubleheader at Madison Square Garden today by visiting www.ticketmaster.com or www.thegarden.com. You can also order tickets over the phone at 1.800.4.NBA.TIX.
For more information on the World Basketball Festival, check out the WBF Facebook Page.
This summer, Kevin Durant and many of his USA Basketball teammates will be wearing the Nike Zoom Hyperfuse USAB Colorway. Check out some photos of KD’s customized Zoom Hyperfuse.
And here’s KD wearing the Zoom Hyperfuse during USA Basketball’s Showcase in Las Vegas last month
For more information on the Zoom Hyperfuse Check out this video:
Pick up a pair of Nike Zoom Hyperfuse in various colorways HERE.