Team USA is gearing up for the 2014 FIBA World Cup in Spain and have picked its 27-man roster that will train July 22-25 in Las Vegas. While the roster is chalk full of talented young players from across the NBA, three names in particular will catch Cleveland Cavaliers fans’ eyes.
Dion Waiters, Tyler Zeller and the cover-boy for NBA Live 14 himself, Kyrie Irving, have all been invited to attend this event, which should help in the maturation process of all three.
The squad will be coached by Duke‘s Mike Krzyewski, who recently committed to coach Team USA through the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics. Krzyewski and USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo have put the emphasis on youth and size with this roster, and both are represented well by the three Cavaliers who will be in attendance.
Attending this event will be greatly beneficial to Irving, Waiters and Zeller as it will allow them to continue working on improving parts of their game while seeing how they stack up against some of their top contemporaries from around the league.
While this will be the first time experiencing this type of atmosphere for Waiters and Zeller, Irving will enter camp with a sense of familiarity. Irving attended the Team USA pre-2012 Summer Olympics camp last summer where he infamously challenged none other than Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant to a one-on-one game.
That challenge, which included some funny banter between the two, was to be taken up sometime this summer. Of course, due to the injury suffered by Bryant this past season, this friendly wager will be put to the back-burner indefinitely. It did go to show, however, that Irving doesn’t lack in confidence in himself and his game.
With the roll that Irving has been on since entering the league, my money would have been on youth over experience.
Oh, and for those wondering why Cavaliers stud Tristan Thompson wasn’t invited, he will be representing his country in training camp. It’s just that he was born in Canada, not the United States.