Davis among 27 NBA players set for US camp
Anthony Davis, a member of the US 2012 London Olympic gold medal team, and Kawhi Leonard of the NBA finalist San Antonio Spurs were among 27 NBA players named Wednesday to a US mini-camp.
The Americans will gather July 22-25 at Las Vegas for a first step on the road to the 2016 Rio de Janeiro with an eye toward assembling a squad for next year's Basketball World Cup in Spain, where the US team will defend the title.
USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo announced the selections, who also include the past three top picks in the NBA Draft -- Davis from last year, 2011 top pick Kyrie Irving of Cleveland and 2010 top choice John Wall of Washington.
"This is an exciting group of versatile and very talented players," said US national team coach Mike Krzyzewski, who has guided US teams to back-to-back Olympic gold medals and a 62-1 overall record in the past seven years.
"The mini-camp will feature a lot of younger players who are emerging in the NBA and it will give us our first opportunity to see them at this elite level. I'm really anxious to get to work with them."
Davis, who plays for the NBA's New Orleans Pelicans, averaged 3.7 points and 2.7 rebounds a game last year as the youngest member of the London Olympic champions.
The US camp roster includes 10 players that trained against the Olympic squad last July before it departed for Europe, including Irving, Sacramento's DeMarcus Cousins, Toronto's DeMar DeRozan, Utah's Derrick Favors and Gordon Hayward, Indiana's Paul George, Chicago's Taj Gibson, Philadelphia's Jrue Holiday, Golden State's Klay Thompson and Leonard, whose Spurs are playing the defending champion Miami Heat in the NBA Finals.
No members of the Heat, including Olympic hero and NBA Most Valuable Player LeBron James, were named to the camp squad.
Others named to the camp list were Memphis' Mike Conley, Portland's Damian Lillard, Golden State's Harrison Barnes, Denver's Kenneth Faried and Ty Lawson, Cleveland's Tyler Zeller and Dion Waiters, the Los Angeles Clippers' DeAndre Jordan, Washington's Bradley Beal, Detroit's Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond, Houston's Chandler Parsons, Milwaukee's Larry Sanders, Charlotte's Kemba Walker and Ryan Anderson of New Orleans.
"The group of players we have assembled for the mini-camp are extremely talented and very versatile," Colangelo said. "This is an important opportunity for each one of them because we will be evaluating which players will continue to be involved in future USA national team training camps and teams."
Colangelo noted NBA stars Kevin Durant, Derrick Rose and Russell Westbrook were among the players who advanced from the 2009 mini-camp to the world or Olympic teams.
Conley has the most NBA experience of anyone on the roster with six seasons while Anderson and Jordan have played five NBA campaigns.
The camp features 2012 NBA Rookie of the Year Irving and 2013 top rookie selection Lillard, who joins Beal, Davis, Waiters and Barnes as NBA All-Rookie Team selections in the lineup.
After the private practice sessions, players will compete in an intra-squad game July 25 at Las Vegas.