Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The USA Basketball Shortlist

The finalists as to who will be comprising the Olympic Team competing in London has been named. Here are their names in alphabetical order:

LaMarcus Aldridge (Portland Trail Blazers)
Carmelo Anthony (New York Knicks)
Chauncey Billups (Los Angeles Clippers)
Chris Bosh (Miami Heat)
Kobe Bryant (Los Angeles Lakers)
Tyson Chandler (New York Knicks)
Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City Thunder)
Rudy Gay (Memphis Grizzlies)
Eric Gordon (New Orleans Hornets)
Blake Griffin (Los Angeles Clippers)
Dwight Howard (Orlando Magic)
Andre Iguodala (Philadelphia 76ers)
LeBron James (Miami Heat)
Kevin Love (Minnesota Timberwolves)
Lamar Odom (Dallas Mavericks)
Chris Paul (Los Angeles Clippers)
Derrick Rose (Chicago Bulls)
Dwyane Wade (Miami Heat)
Russell Westbrook (Oklahoma City Thunder)
Deron Williams (New Jersey Nets)

By grouping this will be the breakdown:

Bigs: LMA, Bosh, TC, Blake, Dwight, Love, Lamar (7)
Wings: Melo, Kobe, KD, Rudy, AI9, LeBron (6)
Guards: Chauncey, Eric, CP3, DRose, Wade, Russ, Deron (7)

The 2008 team a.k.a. Redeem Team looked like this:

Bigs: Boozer, Dwight, Bosh (3)
Wings: Lebron, Redd, Kobe, Prince, Melo (5)
Guards: Kidd, Deron, Wade, CP3 (4)

The 2010 team a.k.a. The B-Team / The Young Guns looked like this: 

Bigs: Love, Odom, Chandler (3)
Wings: KD, Gay, Iguodala, Granger (4)
Guards: Billups, Rose, Russ, Curry, Gordon (5)

My personal choice:

Bigs: Dwight, Love, Bosh (3)
Wings: LeBron, Kobe, KD, Iguodala, Melo (5)
Guards: CP3, Wade, Rose, Russ (4)

My biggest concern with this lineup is perimeter shooting. The previous two iterations had someone that you can say is a designated shooter (Redd in 2008, Curry in 2010). Still, imagine the talent on that lineup for a second. They are heavily favored to retain the title considered by many as a virtual American birthright.

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