(Reuters) - NBA All-Star guard John Wall of the Washington Wizards has been added to the U.S. national team roster following the withdrawal of Los Angeles Clippers power forward Blake Griffin, USA Basketball announced on Friday.
"We are excited that John is now able to participate in our training camp. He had an outstanding season with the Wizards and was a strong performer for us at last year's national team mini-camp," USA Basketball chief Jerry Colangelo said in a statement.
USA Basketball will select a team to defend their 2010 world title at the World Cup in Spain beginning on Aug. 30 from among 19 players participating in a Las Vegas training camp starting on Monday.
Wall, in his fourth NBA season, averaged 19.3 points, an NBA second-best 8.8 assists per game, 4.1 rebounds and 1.8 steals.
Griffin said on Thursday he was withdrawing from consideration for the team.
“Right now, I want to focus and dedicate 100 percent of my energy on improving and preparing for the upcoming season with the Clippers,” Griffin said in a statement.
USA Basketball and head coach Mike Krzyzewski, who has steered the U.S. team to the past two Olympic gold medals, still will have a wealth of candidates to choose from.
Players expected at the Las Vegas training camp include: DeMarcus Cousins (Kings); Stephen Curry (Warriors); Anthony Davis (Pelicans); Kevin Durant (Thunder); Paul George (Pacers); James Harden (Rockets); Kyrie Irving (Cavaliers); Kevin Love (Timberwolves) and Derrick Rose (Bulls).
Team USA will be defending a world title won four years ago and are aiming to be only the third team after Brazil (1959 and 1963) and Yugoslavia (1998 and 2002) to win back-to-back world titles.
(Reporting by Larry Fine in New York; Editing by Gene Cherry)
- Sports & Recreation
- Washington Wizards
- USA Basketball
- Blake Griffin
- Los Angeles Clippers
- John Wall