Cleveland Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving is among the final 16 players in the running to make the Team USA roster for the 2014 FIBA World Championships. Team USA announced the first round of cuts last night and Washington Wizards point guard John Wall, Wizards guard Bradley Beal and Atlanta Hawks power forward Paul Millsap were the notable omissions.
Team USA has the week off and will resume practice on August 14 in Chicago, where four more players will be cut. The 16 players are Irving, Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose, New Orleans Pelicans power forward Anthony Davis, Oklahoma City Thunder small forward Kevin Durant, Golden State Warriors guard Steph Curry, Warriors shooting guard Klay Thompson, Houston Rockets guard James Harden, Atlanta Hawks wing Kyle Korver, Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins, Dallas Mavericks forward Chandler Parsons, Utah Jazz forward Gordon Hayward, Toronto Raptors wing DeMar DeRozan, Portland Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard, Denver Nuggets forward Kenneth Faried, Detroit Pistons center Andre Drummond and Brooklyn Nets center Mason Plumlee. Indiana Pacers forward Paul George would likely be on the team if not for the horrific league injury he suffered last week in a scrimmage.
With Wall cut, Irving's competition at point guard would appear to be Curry and Lillard. Curry, however, has and can play off the ball. It also doesn't hurt that Team USA is coached by Mike Krzyzewski, who was Irving's college coach in his one season at Duke. The 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup takes place from August 30 to September 14 in Spain.