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Griffin, Harden, Iguodala round out Team USA roster

Jul 7, 2012, 7:32 PM EDT

Spain v USA Iguodala Getty Images

Blake Griffin, James Harden and Andre Iguodala are headed to London.

Coach Mike Krzyzewski and USA Basketball president Jerry Colangelo made it official and those three men will round out a Team USA roster that also includes LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Kevin Love and Tyson Chandler.

That’s a gold medal roster.

It means that Eric Gordon, Rudy Gay and Anthony Davis miss the cut.

Choosing Griffin over Davis as the last big on the roster is not a surprise, at first because Davis has a sprained ankle that has kept him out of Team USA practices that opened in Las Vegas on Friday. Griffin has more experience and brings an athleticism at the four no other country in the world can match. Davis will get his chance down the line.

That was the easy choice.

Iguodala over Gay was splitting hairs, but it came down to defense.

“He’s a stopper,” Colangelo said of Iguodala. “You take his character, you take his talents and what he can contribute in a team concept, then being the stopper that he is, he deserved to be on this team.”

Taking Harden over Gordon gives the team a more true two guard to likely come off the bench behind Kobe, and also a better playmaker. While Gordon is the better shooter, Harden is good enough there and has a wider skill set.

Gordon also has been in the middle of a messy free agency, where he wants to go to the Suns but the Hornets will match the max offer sheet to keep him. Gordon was asked about that after the opening practice. Keeping the vibes positive on Team USA is a goal of Colangelo and Krzyzewski, so this could have played a factor. But Harden also is a good fit.

“He has size, he has length at his position, he is more than adequate defensively at his position and he comes up with a lot of loose balls,” Colangelo said.

  1. chicagosworth - Jul 7, 2012 at 7:39 PM

    Sounds good to me!

    • raysfan1 - Jul 7, 2012 at 8:24 PM

      3 of the Thunder for Team USA, 4 Thunder players in the Olympics with Serge Ibaka playing for Spain.

      • raysfan1 - Jul 7, 2012 at 8:25 PM

        Oops, pissed–this was supposed to be in reply to the next post down from this

      • raysfan1 - Jul 7, 2012 at 8:26 PM

        “missed” not “pissed”–can’t type either. Guess I’ll quit now while I’m behind.

  2. 00maltliquor - Jul 7, 2012 at 7:45 PM

    Smart pick-ups out of the six to come out with those three. That’s exactly what I would have done, with the exception of Eric Gordon over Harden, but it’s not a crime going JH over EG so it’s all good.

    Must be cool as hell to be a Thunder fan right now knowing that 3 of their guys are going to partake in the Olympics. I can’t wait to see Blake Griffin just sh!t all over the competition too! Who’s wants to be the next Fredrick Wiess?! CAN’T WAIT! USA all day.

    • 00maltliquor - Jul 7, 2012 at 7:47 PM

      *exception of James Harden over Eric Gordon…

  3. cosanostra71 - Jul 7, 2012 at 7:46 PM

    let’s do this! Go USA!

  4. thenmoveback - Jul 7, 2012 at 7:53 PM

    Let go USA !

  5. rocketsbb - Jul 7, 2012 at 7:58 PM

    Every team the u.s puts together is expected to win the gold…..

  6. rocketsbb - Jul 7, 2012 at 7:59 PM

    and we should be bringing back the gold home where it belongs, AGAIN!

  7. moseskkim - Jul 7, 2012 at 8:00 PM

    Go puerto Rico! Heh jk go USA!

  8. blakegriffin32 - Jul 7, 2012 at 8:06 PM

    If you told me 4 years ago that the Clippers would have 2 US Olympians I woulda slapped you hahah.

  9. lemfax - Jul 7, 2012 at 8:28 PM


  10. kregaway - Jul 7, 2012 at 8:56 PM

    How cool is it that blakegriffen32 is talking about himself and his team on this…

  11. isujames - Jul 7, 2012 at 9:20 PM

    Wow, we have elementary school kids leaving comments on PBT now.

  12. trybe29dr - Jul 7, 2012 at 9:36 PM

    Harden? After the postseason he had?

  13. watermelon1 - Jul 7, 2012 at 10:02 PM

    No Javale McGee!?!? What are they thinking!!!

  14. philadelphiafan - Jul 7, 2012 at 10:02 PM

    Gay can produce more offense then Iggy but Iggy has been there before and is one of the premier defenders in the league. After all I dont think team USA is going to be hurting for offense.

  15. xxakshunxx - Jul 7, 2012 at 11:26 PM

    As a Sixers fan it’s been a shame they signed Iggy to such a big contract and wasted money on Elton.. It would’ve been nice to see Igg paired up with some better talent.. For his sake hopefully they trade him so he doesn’t have to sit through more rebuilding and so we can see what we have with our young guys

    • tfoz5150 - Jul 8, 2012 at 9:36 AM

      You picked the wrong article to go off on the sixers

  16. dvic13 - Jul 8, 2012 at 12:54 AM

    How could they pick Harden over the “best young shooting guard” in the league? Yes, that’s sarcasm.

  17. trybe29dr - Jul 8, 2012 at 3:00 AM

    ^^^^^ they should have viewed tape of their june performances and realized that an injured shooting guard wouldnt hurt them as much as a guard shooting bricks…they messed up picking harden over gordon but USA will still catch gold…wont matter…

  18. fnc111 - Jul 8, 2012 at 9:02 AM

    That’s really gay that Gay didn’t make it.

    • jimeejohnson - Jul 8, 2012 at 10:55 AM

      You can come out of the closet, now.

  19. borderline1988 - Jul 8, 2012 at 10:08 AM

    I wouldn’t have taken Harden over Gordon.
    Gordon is the better all-around player, is a better defender and is more scrappy (can bring the heat). Plus, he’s at least as good of a shooter as Harden. Harden’s more streaky.

    Everyone talks about Harden being a playmaker…he’s not. He’s just a tremendous scorer. Not a big assist guy. I never saw him as much of a team player – he’s that classic 6th man off the bench who, when hot, can score on anyone in a variety of different ways.

    And for all those who say that no one on any other team would have made this roster…my question is this: would you take Harden over Ginoibili?

  20. cowboychris5xchamps - Jul 8, 2012 at 1:54 PM

    Hell of a roster! Only one true “5” and we’re still in great shape to crush the competition and capture gold!

  21. florida727 - Jul 9, 2012 at 1:41 PM

    These were all “no lose” picks. You could make arguments for any of the six to be on the team, and no one would really have a legitimate argument against it. Hopefully Gordon, Gay and Davis get a chance to play for their country in another event, whether it be Worlds or another Olympics, and it’s just as meaningful to them then as it would have been to them now.

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