Team USA has one more exhibition game on August 26 against Slovenia, but their exhibition play here in the United States is finished, as they went 3-0 against Brazil, Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico.
After the wake of the Paul George injury and the surprise departure of Kevin Durant from the roster, Team USA had some work to do to come together as a team. Against Brazil, a roster heavily made with NBA players including Nene, Tiago Splitter, Leandro Barbosa and Anderson Varejao, it was a slim margin if victory. USA won the game 95-78 behind 20 points from Anthony Davis, and 18 from James Harden.
This game was in Chicago, and welcomed Derrick Rose back to center stage in his first real competition, other than the Blue/White scrimmage a week before.
Four days later, USA met Dominican Republic in New York. DR shot a miserable 34% against USA and allowed USA a large margin of victory at 105-62. Everyone scored for Team USA and they had 7 players in double figures, led by 13 from Rudy Gay and DeMar DeRozan. USA shot 58% for the night.
Two days later, they met Puerto Rico for their final exhibition in the States and before making their final cuts to the roster. Carlos Arroyo and J.J. Barea helped lead Puerto Rico to stay close to USA, they were tied at the end of the first quarter, and within reach at halftime. But the second half belonged to USA as they outscored PR 60-39. USA won the game, 112-86.
USA again had 7 players in double figures, led by 20 from Steph Curry. It again showed the progression of the team as they had control of the game. This isn't a normal Team USA roster with a dominant superstar player, but they are confident going into FIBA play.
Coach K and his staff then made the final cuts to the roster, leaving out Damian Lillard, Kyle Korver, Gordon Hayward and Chandler Parsons. That makes the roster composed of the following players:
James Harden, Derrick Rose, Steph Curry, Kyrie Irving, Anthony Davis, Kenneth Faried, DeMarcus Cousins, Klay Thompson, Rudy Gay, DeMar DeRozan, Mason Plumlee, and Andre Drummond.
After their final exhibition game against Slovenia, in Spain, they will begin their FIBA World Cup games against Finland, Turkey, New Zealand, Dominican Republic, and Ukraine. The Round of 16 games begin on September 6, and the Gold Medal game will be on September 14. All Team USA FIBA games will be televised on ESPN.
Hot Hot Hoops will help you follow Team USA while they are in Spain and give you a chance to chat about the team what's happening. You can start here. Talk to us about what you've seen, liked, and thought about Team USA so far.