Getty Images

USA names 12-man roster of G-Leaguers for November World Cup qualifying

Leave a comment

In 2019, USA Basketball will send a Gregg Popovich-coached roster of names every casual fan knows — some of the NBA’s elite — to China for the World Cup. A similar roster will then be on its way in 2020 to Tokyo for the Olympics.

But it’s a team of G-Leaguers who is going to get Team USA there.

FIBA — the body that oversees international basketball competitions — changed the timing of the qualifying for the 2019 Basketball World Cup from its traditional summer slots to fall and winter. Why? Who knows, they are FIBA, the only sports organization that can rival FIFA for ridiculousness. Of course, the new qualifying dates fall during the NBA season, not to mention the seasons of other major leagues around the globe, and this isn’t soccer so leagues are not taking a break to send players.

Meaning the USA is sending a team of G-League players to the qualifying tournament starting in November, with Jeff Van Gundy will coach them. Wednesday USA Basketball announced the roster.

Four players from the team Van Gundy coached to win the AmeriCup last summer return: Larry Drew II (Sioux Falls Skyforce); Reggie Hearn (Reno Bighorns); Xavier Munford (Wisconsin Herd); and AmeriCup MVP Jameel Warney (Texas Legends). They will be joined by: Markel Brown (Oklahoma City Blue); Semaj Christon (free agent); Jarell Eddie (Windy City Bulls); Amile Jefferson (Iowa Wolves); Kennedy Meeks (Raptors 905); Elijah Millsap (Iowa Wolves); Donald Sloan (Texas Legends); and Travis Wear (South Bay Lakers).

If those names sound familiar they should, there are eight guys who have had NBA stints on that roster — Sloan has played in 218 games, Brown 109, Sloan, Millsap 69, Christon 64, and Wear 51.

“USA Basketball has put together a versatile roster that has a mix of youth and experience highlighted by our four returning players from this summer’s AmeriCup gold medal team,” Van Gundy said in a statement. “Puerto Rico and Mexico are outstanding teams that are extremely well coached, and we will have our hands full in our games against them. We are excited about the challenge, and I know we all have great pride in representing our country.”

The USA has two November qualifying games: versus Puerto Rico on Nov. 23, and versus Mexico Nov. 26. There also will be qualifying games in February and next June and July.

 

“Ray Allen from long distance” with chip shot to save par at American Century Classic

Leave a comment

“Ray Allen from long distance, how many times have we said that?”

Ray Allen had a good weekend at the American Century Championships, the former NBA sharpshooter and future Hall of Famer finished third in the celebrity golf event. One of the reasons he was there, this chip shot on 13 Sunday.

Former Cowboy’s quarterback Tony Romo won the event, with former MLB pitcher Mark Mulder was second.

LeBron James sits courtside for Lakers’ Summer League win

Getty Images
Leave a comment

There are two, maybe three guys playing for the Lakers in Summer League likely to be sharing a locker room with LeBron James next season — Isaac Bonga and Josh Hart, with maybe Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk and/or Alex Caruso. Only Hart could see the court much.

LeBron was still courtside on Sunday for a quarterfinal game at Summer League, showing his support and being a good teammate. He gave Hart a hug on the court. Brandon Ingram stopped by and talked with LeBron for a bit.

LeBron watched the Lakers continue their strong run through the Summer League, racking up a 101-78 win. LeBron was into it, when Mykhailiuk took a shot midway through the first quarter LeBron yelled, ‘cash only!”  The shot was nothing but net.

The Lakers are on to the Summer League semifinals. Los Angeles won the Vegas Summer League last year.

 

After losing to his father in golf, Stephen Curry leaps into Lake Tahoe

1 Comment

Golf fanatic Stephen Curry was clearly enjoying himself on the links at the American Century Championship celebrity golf event in Lake Tahoe this past weekend.

But he couldn’t beat his father, Dell.

The price? Curry (and his caddy) had to jump in the lake. Check out the video above.

For the record, Tony Romo won the event.

 

Spurs’ pick Chimezie Metu to miss time with fractured wrist

Associated Press
Leave a comment

Chimezie Metu showed some promise in the Summer League games he played for San Antonio, scoring 12.5 points a game on 55 percent shooting in Las Vegas, and 10.7 per game on 54 percent shooting in Salt Lake City. The second round pick of the Spurs (No. 49 overall) is raw and needs a lot of development, but he can get buckets. The potential is there.

That development is going to be on hold a while, as what was thought to be a sprained wrist has turned out to be a fracture.

From Tom Osborn of the San Antonio Express-News.

After an examination Saturday, the Spurs medical staff downgraded second-round pick Chimezie Metu’s left wrist injury from a sprain to a fracture, a league source said Saturday.

Metu was injured late in the Spurs’ 95-90 win over Washington on July 8 at the Las Vegas Summer League, when he landed awkwardly after leaping to catch a lob pass at the rim. The 6-foot-10 big man finished the game but was sidelined for the remainder of the schedule.

After undergoing X-rays at the Thomas & Mack Center, Metu was diagnosed with a sprain. But Spurs’ team doctors suspected a possible fracture, which was confirmed after Metu returned to San Antonio on Saturday.

Metu should be good to go by training camp. Metu is hoping his summer and training camp play will earn him a roster spot, although the Spurs tend not to sign second-round picks the year they were drafted (they tend to let them spend a year or two in the G-League or in Europe). A lot of his chances on making the roster depend on any other moves the Spurs make this summer and what their roster looks like come the fall.