When USA Basketball held its four-day mini-camp in Las Vegas last week, Roy Hibbert was a noticeable omission from the roster.
There’s a reason, of course, and it has nothing to do with Hibbert’s level of talent or ability to commit to the program. The fact that he’s played for another country in the past, even at a junior level, is likely to prevent him from joining Team USA for the 2016 Olympics, or at any point in the future.
From Marc Stein of ESPN.com:
Vegas leftover morsel: USA Basketball still covets Roy Hibbert but all FIBA signals lead USAB to believe @Hoya2aPacer locked into Jamaica
Much as both sides want to find workaround, Hibbert HAS played for Jamaica senior NT. FIBA rules make switch to Team USA near impossible
It’s an unfortunate situation for the USA squad, whose only true weakness is in the front court positions.
Last week’s mini-camp had guys like Ryan Anderson, Andre Drummond, Greg Monroe, Kenneth Faried, Larry Sanders, and even Tyler Zeller working out for Jerry Colangelo and Mike Krzyzewski in hopes that one of them would show something that would make adding them to the roster a necessity.
Anthony Davis would appear to be a lock to make the team, and DeMarcus Cousins would too, at least from a talent perspective — but attitude, work ethic, and team chemistry are all areas where Cousins has been historically deficient.
No one is going to shed a tear for USA Basketball here, but it’s clear that the team could certainly use a player of Hibbert’s talents.