Gone are the days of dominance. After a bronze medal performance at the 2004 Olympics and a 6th place finish at the last World Championships, USA Basketball took a new approach to putting together the dream team of the future. They targeted youth and athleticism and above all players who can make a long term commitment to the team and are hungry to win. With the youth on board they brought on Coach K, one of the best in the business and he brings with him a ton of experience dealing with young gifted athletes.This is a test
At first glance the roster is hardly overwhelming as its not a team full of superstars but more a balance of role players and defensive specialist to complement the superstars. One third of the roster is made up of players from the class of 2003 (probably one of the best draft classes in the history of the NBA) and the average age is closer to 20 than it is to 30 for this men's senior team but if they learnt anything in the past is that the game is played different and this team was put together with that in mind. The players representing the USA are the best suited to the international game in the opinion of the mastermind behind this program Jerry Colangelo. The team is on their way to China to begin this quest for gold and it will be about a month until they can prove that they are once again the best in the world.
Living in Canada isn't very conducive to getting basketball coverage on television but with the help of TVUplayer I was able to watch the exhibition game between USA and Puerto Rico.
Observations after a first look at team USA...