Aug 29, 2014, 2:47 PM EST
After all, 2014 Team USA had Kevin Durant.
The 2014 team, though, doesn’t even have that Durant after he withdrew.
Time to lower expectations? Jerry Colangelo sure doesn’t think so.
But Team USA coach Mike Krzyzewski and USAB chairman Jerry Colangelo are nonetheless convinced that the 2014 squad begins the tournament in better shape than the 2010 group that ultimately won that FIBA World Championship in Turkey without a single member from the gold-medal-winning 2008 Olympic team.
“By far,” Colangelo told ESPN.com. “Because we have a couple of Olympic gold medalists on this roster in Anthony Davis and James Harden. We have three players from that team in 2010 in Steph Curry, Derrick Rose and Rudy Gay. And they’re not 21 this time. They’re 23 or 24. A little bit older and more mature.
“We like our team. We really do.”
Colangelo doesn’t strike me as someone who would posture here, though I can’t put it past him. I really think he believes the team he assembled is that strong.
Winning gold is always the standard for Team USA, and this only further cements that as the goal. Not only that, Colangelo is setting the expectation the Americans will cruise through the competition.
Soon enough, we’ll see whether he’s right.
- Rumor: Ray Allen leaning toward retirement, not return 3
- Josh Smith makes Rockets debut, throws down two-handed dunk (VIDEO) 10
- Carmelo Anthony on the Knicks: “The fans are dying, we’re dying” 18
- Rockets officially sign Josh Smith, who will play Friday night; waive Tarik Black 6
- Clippers win ‘nice, boring’ Christmas Day battle with Warriors 1
- Miami fans give LeBron warm welcome, Heat team not so much in upset win 24
- Russell Westbrook inspires Thunder to skid-stopping win over Spurs 8
- LeBron James, Stephen Curry leading in early All-Star voting returns 30