Two former Florida Gators have earned spots in USA Basketball’s 28-man player pool for the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup in Spain and 2016 Rio Olympics with Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal and Golden State Warriors power forward David Lee officially named to the team by the organization on Thursday morning.
According to ESPN’s Marc Stein, who reported all 28 players on Wednesday night, LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul are on the team but will not participate in the World Cup. Also joining Beal and Lee will be Kevin Durant, Paul George, James Harden, Dwight Howard and Stephen Curry along with 20 other NBA stars.
Beal, Lee and their teammates could compete over each of the next three summers.
They will first report to Team USA shortly after the conclusion of the 2013-14 NBA season in order to begin practicing ahead of the World Cup, which runs from Aug. 30 to Sept. 14. Should the United States win the World Cup, it will not have to participate in an international event in the summer of 2015. Either way, the team will come together again ahead of the 2016 Olympics in Brazil.
Though Beal and Lee have made the player pool – Houston Rockets forward Chandler Parsons was considered but ultimately not chosen – neither is guaranteed to actually play in an international game. (Parsons participated in USA Basketball mini camp in the summer of 2013.) Team USA will whittle down the 28 pool participants to a 12-man roster ahead of each event.
Beal has vast international experience after representing the United States and winning a pair of gold medals in the 2009 FIBA Americas U16 Championship and 2010 FIBA U17 World Championship in consecutive summers. He was named MVP of the latter event as he led the Americans with 18.3 points per game with averages of 3.5 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 2.3 steals.
Beal was supposed to join USAB minicamp in the summer of 2013 but could only watch with the coaches from the sidelines while recovering from a stress fracture in his leg that forced him to miss the end of the 2012-13 season.
Lee returns to the American player pool after participating during the last Olympic cycle (2010-12). He was not chosen for an international roster during that three-year span. Lee also participated in USAB minicamps in 2009 and 2013.