Love named to initial Team USA pool 23 Jan 14

Minneapolis/St. Paul – USA Basketball today announced that Minnesota Timberwolves forward Kevin Love was among 28 players selected for the 2014-16 USA Men’s National Team Pool, from which the 2014 USA World Championship Team and, if the U.S. qualifies, the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team will be selected.

“It is an honor to once again have the opportunity to represent my country as part of Team USA,” said Love on the selection. “I look forward to beginning our journey towards defending our gold medal.”

Love, who was also a part of the national team that won gold at the 2012 London Olympics, is one of seven players that return to the national team after capturing gold at the 2010 FIBA World Championship. He averaged 4.0 points and 4.7 rebounds in 7.7 minutes per game during the tournament as the U.S. qualified for the 2012 Olympics. He continued his efficient play in the Olympics two years later, averaging 11.6 points and a team-high 7.6 rebounds in 17.0 minutes per game as the U.S. brought home its second consecutive gold medal.

Playing in his sixth NBA season, Love is averaging 25.0 points (4th in NBA), 13.0 rebounds (2nd) and a career-high 4.1 assists per game. He is attempting to become the first player since Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in 1975-76 to average 25+ points, 13+ rebounds and 4+ assists over a full season. The league-leader in double-doubles (35), Love has tallied more 25+ point, 15+ rebound, 5+ assist games this season (eight) than any individual in the league has compiled since his debut in 2008-09.

Joining Love on the USA Men’s National Team roster are: LaMarcus Aldridge (Portland Trail Blazers), Carmelo Anthony (New York Knicks), Bradley Beal (Washington Wizards), Tyson Chandler (New York Knicks), DeMarcus Cousins (Sacramento Kings), Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors), Anthony Davis (New Orleans Pelicans), Andre Drummond (Detroit Pistons), Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City Thunder), Kenneth Faried (Denver Nuggets), Paul George (Indiana Pacers), Blake Griffin (Los Angeles Clippers), James Harden (Houston Rockets), Gordon Hayward (Utah Jazz), Dwight Howard (Houston Rockets), Andre Iguodala (Golden State Warriors), Kyrie Irving (Cleveland Cavaliers), LeBron James (Miami Heat), Kyle Korver (Atlanta Hawks), David Lee (Golden State Warriors), Kawhi Leonard (San Antonio Spurs), Damian Lillard (Portland Trail Blazers), Chris Paul (Los Angeles Clippers), Derrick Rose (Chicago Bulls), Klay Thompson (Golden State Warriors), Russell Westbrook (Oklahoma City Thunder) and Deron Williams (Brooklyn Nets).

The 2014-16 USA Basketball National Team coaching staff features USA head coach and Duke University’s Naismith Hall of Fame mentor Mike Krzyzewski. Serving as assistant coaches are USA Basketball and Syracuse University veteran coach Jim Boeheim, Chicago Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau and New Orleans Pelicans head coach Monty Williams.

All 28 selected players possess prior USA Basketball experience. Ten players (Beal, Cousins, Davis, Drummond, Faried, George, Hayward, Irving, Lillard and Thompson) participated this past July in the 2013 USA Basketball Men’s National team mini-camp, while six of the named players (Cousins, George, Hayward, Irving, Leonard, and Thompson) were part of the 2012 USA Select Team that trained against the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team.

A smaller group of U.S. National Team members will be selected to participate in the 2014 USA National Team’s opening training camp in July. Exact training dates and locations for the USA National Team training in 2014 will be announced at a later date.