[FILE] LeBron James. NBAE David Liam Kyle/NBAE/Getty Images/AFP
LeBron James and Stephen Curry were on Friday named in a star-studded 35-man squad which will form the basis of the United States basketball team for the 2019 World Cup and 2020 Olympics.
A total of 17 Olympic gold medallists and 30 former members of the USA national team pool were included in the list of players who will attend a training camp in Las Vegas in July.
As well as former NBA MVPs James and Curry, the squad included Houston Rockets duo James Harden and Chris Paul, along with Boston’s Kyrie Irving and Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook.
Curry’s Golden State team-mates Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green were also in the group, which will be coached by San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich.
USA men’s national team managing director Jerry Colangelo told reporters on a conference call that the squad could still add players.
“It’s a very fluid list. There could be some additions,” said Colangelo, who believes the experience of the squad could give the USA an advantage.
“I don’t think there’s any substitute for experience,” Colangelo said.
“With this roster, just looking at how many are gold medallists and have experience of winning situations, they’re not novices in international play. So that’s a leg up, there’s no question of that.”
Popovich meanwhile said he was looking forward to coaching the latest incarnation of a basketball dynasty that has won gold at the past three Olympic games.
“It’s quite something when you think about being on the court with all these players, all this talent,” Popovich said.
“There’s quite a brotherhood there, friendships. To see that in action and see these guys come together is pretty exciting.”
Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, Kevin Durant (Golden State Warriors); Chris Paul, James Harden, Eric Gordon (Houston Rockets); LeBron James, Kevin Love (Cleveland Cavaliers); Blake Griffin, Andre Drummond (Detroit Pistons); Gordon Hayward, Kyrie Irving (Boston Celtics); DeMarcus Cousins, Anthony Davis (New Orleans Pelicans); Myles Turner, Victor Oladipo (Indiana Pacers); DeMar Derozan, Kyle Lowry (Toronto Raptors); Paul George, Russell Westbrook (Oklahoma City Thunder); Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum (Portland Trail Blazers); John Wall, Bradley Beal (Washington Wizards); Tobias Harris, DeAndre Jordan (Los Angeles Clippers); Kawhi Leonard (San Antonio Spurs); Jimmy Butler (Minnesota Timberwolves); Harrison Barnes (Dallas Mavericks); Devin Booker (Phoenix Suns); Mike Conley Jr. (Memphis Grizzlies); Khris Middleton (Milwaukee Bucks); Isaiah Thomas (Los Angeles Lakers); Kemba Walker (Charlotte Hornets)