With injuries, pullouts and cuts happening over the last month, USA Basketball finally narrowed their roster down to the final 12 this past Saturday. And Kyrie Irving will be one of those players on the Team USA roster this upcoming September for the FIBA World Cup. With one more exhibition game to be played this upcoming Tuesday, Team USA will officially begin their road to the Gold Medal Game on August 30 against Finland in the Group Stage. But who else will be joining Irving on the road to the Gold Medal Game on September 14?
Well, Irving has first off survived a round of point guard cuts that included John Wall and Damian Lillard, two court generals that stood a very good chance of making the final roster. Before these cuts even happened, however, Kevin Love decided not to participate in Team USA activities this summer due to the looming trade rumors, Kevin Durant withdrew his name from the pool of players and Paul George suffered one of the most horrifying injuries on a basketball court in a scrimmage between the USA basketball players. Without three superstars on the roster before final cuts even came, USAB chairman Jerry Colangelo and Team USA head coach Mike Krzyzewski had a lot of work to do in regards of putting together a roster.
The roster still rounded out quite nicely. At the point guard position Kyrie Irving will be joined by Derrick Rose and Stephen Curry. Whether or not Irving will start at point guard is still to be determined, but he has a very good chance. He has impressed in the scrimmages and exhibition games, and with Rose missing time this summer and still fully recovering from his injury, Irving could very well be named to the starting five after the final exhibition game on Tuesday. Here is what the final 12-man roster looks like:
Stephen Curry, Kyrie Irving, Derrick Rose
DeMar DeRozan, James Harden, Klay Thompson
Anthony Davis, Kenneth Faried, Mason Plumlee
DeMarcus Cousins, Andre Drummond
Colangelo noted that he wanted to go as big as possible on Saturday after announcing the final roster, which is why the team had a hard time parting ways with Drummond. That’s why the team parted ways with Lillard, Chandler Parsons, Kyle Korver and Gordon Hayward with the final cuts.
Make sure to support Kyrie Irving and Team USA in the upcoming weeks at the FIBA World Cup. Here is the complete schedule for Team USA and for the elimination rounds:
August 30 at 3:30 p.m. — vs. Finland
August 31 at 3:30 p.m. — vs. Turkey
September 2 at 11:30 a.m. — vs. New Zealand
September 3 at 3:30 p.m. — vs. Dominican Republic
September 4 at 11:30 a.m. — vs. Ukraine
September 6-7 — Round of 16
September 9-10 — Quarterfinals
September 11-12 — Semifinals
September 13 — Bronze Medal Game
September 14 — Gold Medal Game