USA - Defending champs reload with superstars for another title run
LAS VEGAS (FIBA Basketball World Cup) - The USA are going to show up at the FIBA Basketball World Cup in Spain with a roster to envy.
That was assured on Monday when USA Basketball made public the 19-strong list of players that will be at the national team training camp in Las Vegas.
Durant was the Most Valuable Player of the World Championship four years ago and also of the NBA in the 2013-14 campaign.
The tough part for USA coach Mike Krzyzewski and USA Basketball President Jerry Colangelo will now be to whittle the list down to the final 12 players.
"Looking at the roster of players who will be participating in the training camp I'm impressed by the success they had this past season and by what they have achieved in their careers," said Krzyzewski, who has led the USA since the 2006 FIBA World Championship in Japan.
"It's valuable to have some veteran leadership who has won gold at the highest levels internationally.
"The list also includes some of the most exciting young players who could definitely contribute to this team.
"Myself and the entire coaching staff are excited to get things underway and as we’ve done each summer, our team will strive to represent the United States with respect and a commitment to excellence that hopefully will make every American proud."
The 19 players who will be vying for spots in the team come from 18 NBA teams.
In addition to Durant (Oklahoma City Thunder) and Love (Minnesota Timberwolves), James Harden (Houston Rockets) and Anthony Davis (New Orleans Pelicans) - members of the 2012 London Games squad - will also be at the training camp.
The two were both in the 2010 USA squad but did not feature in 2012.
Rose's career has been blighted by knee injuries of late but he is battling back to full fitness and his presence in the preliminary squad will not only boost his confidence but is also sure to give the USA an emotional lift.
Kyrie Irving of the Cleveland Cavaliers, Damian Lillard of the Portland and Paul George of the Indiana Pacers are three of the brightest young talents in the NBA who excelled this past season and stand an excellent chance of making the squad for Spain.
Injuries have kept Blake Griffin off past squads but the Los Angeles Clippers superstar will be at the training camp and looks to be a near certainty for selection.
Russell Westbrook, a member of the last two USA squads with Durant and Love, had been expected to play for the USA but withdrew from consideration last week as a precautionary measure due to injuries he incurred since the 2013 playoffs.
"First off, I'm very pleased about the 19 players who are now confirmed to participate in the 2014 USA National Team training camp in Las Vegas," said Colangelo.
"This group possesses outstanding individual talents, while also boasting excellent versatility and varying amounts of USA Basketball experience.
"I am also pleased about the addition of DeMar DeRozan and Chandler Parsons to the USA national team and to the 2014 training camp.
"Both played well in last summer's USA Basketball national team mini-camp and went on to record outstanding NBA seasons."
The USA training camp in Las Vegas tips off 28 July and runs until 1 August.
USA training camp squad: Bradley Beal (Washington Wizards); DeMarcus Cousins (Sacramento Kings); Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors); Anthony Davis (New Orleans Pelicans); Andre Drummond (Detroit Pistons); Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City Thunder); Kenneth Faried (Denver Nuggets); Paul George (Indiana Pacers); Blake Griffin (Los Angeles Clippers); James Harden (Houston Rockets); Gordon Hayward (Utah Jazz); Kyrie Irving (Cleveland Cavaliers); Kyle Korver (Atlanta Hawks); Damian Lillard (Portland Trail Blazers); Kevin Love (Minnesota Timberwolves); Derrick Rose (Chicago Bulls); Klay Thompson (Golden State Warriors); DeMar DeRozan (Toronto Raptors); and Chandler Parsons (Dallas Mavericks).