USA Men’s World Cup Qualifying Team Announced for September Games
-- USA to Open Second Round Play Versus Uruguay on September 14 in Las Vegas --
Featuring a pair of USA Basketball World Cup Qualifying Teams veterans, and boasting of nine players who played with NBA teams in 2017-18, USA Basketball announced its official 12-man roster for the September USA World Cup Qualifying Team.
The USA will continue its training through Sept. 13 at UNLV’s Mendenhall Center. The USA, playing in the first competition window of FIBA World Cup Qualifying second-round games, will meet Uruguay on Sept. 14 (7 p.m. PDT) at UNLV’s Cox Pavilion, then meet Panama on Sept. 17 in Panama City.
The USA roster is capped by Bryce Alford (Oklahoma City Blue); Dwayne Bacon (Charlotte Hornets); Henry Ellenson (Detroit Pistons); Reggie Hearn (Grand Rapids Drive); Isaiah Hicks (New York Knicks); Dakari Johnson (Free Agent);Frank Mason III (Sacramento Kings); Ben Moore (Fort Wayne Mad Ants); Chasson Randle (Capital City Go-Go); Travis Trice (Milwaukee Bucks); Jameel Warney (Texas Legends); and Derrick White (San Antonio Spurs).
Former NBA head coach Jeff Van Gundy, who led the USA to a 5-0 record and the gold medal at the 2017 FIBA AmeriCup Championship and led the USA to a 5-1 record in the first-round of the FIBA Americas World Cup Qualifying, is again head coach of the USA Basketball Men’s World Cup Qualifying Team. NBA G League Westchester Knicks head coach Mike Miller, and former Georgetown University coach John Thompson III, are serving as USA assistant coaches.
Hearn and Warney return to the USA Team after previously playing with USA World Cup Qualifying Teams. Hearn played with the USA’s November 2017 and June 2018 World Cup Qualifying Teams, and started in all four games and averaged 12.3 points a game. Warney played for U.S. in the November World Cup Qualifier and averaged 11.5 points and 8.0 rebounds a game. Both players were also part of the USA AmeriCup Team that finished 5-0 to claim gold in August 2017. Warney, who was selected the 2017 USA Basketball Male Athlete of the Year, earned AmeriCup MVP honors after posting 12.8 points and 8.6 rebounds per game, while Hearn contributed 10.0 points a game.
Nine of the players earned NBA playing time in 2017-18, including Bacon (53 games with Charlotte Hornets); Ellenson (38 games with Detroit Pistons); Hearn (three games with Detroit Pistons); Hicks (18 games with New York Knicks); Johnson (31 games with Oklahoma City Thunder); Mason (52 games with Sacramento Kings); Moore (two games with Indiana Pacers); Warney (three games with Dallas Mavericks) and White (17 games with San Antonio Spurs). Additionally, Randle played 26 games in 2016-17 for the NBA New York Knicks and Philadelphia 76ers.
Eleven of the players own NBA G League experience, including nine who played in the NBA’s official minor league in 2017-18.
After finishing 5-1 and first in Group C in first-round action, the USA opens the FIBA Americas World Cup Qualifying second round facing Group A’s No. 2 seed, Uruguay (4-2), on Friday, Sept. 14 (7 p.m. PDT) at Cox Pavilion on the campus of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Tickets for the USA-Uruguay game are on sale now andare $20 (plus fees) for general admission and $60 (plus fees) for courtside. For ticket information call 702-739-FANS (3267) or visit USAB.com/WCQ.
The USA will complete the September competition window with an away game versus Panama (3-3) on Sept. 17 in Panama City.
The full USA World Cup Qualifying Team training schedule is available atusab.com/mens/wc-qualifying/training-schedule.aspx.
2017-18 FIBA World Cup Qualifiers
Following the completion of the first round, the top three finishing teams in each of the four, first-round groups advanced to the second round. The three advancing teams from Group A, Argentina (5-1), Uruguay (4-2) and Panama (3-3), and the top three finishers from Group C, USA, Puerto Rico (4-2) and Mexico (3-3), form Group E. The top three finishers from Group B, Venezuela (5-1), Brazil (5-1) and Chile (1-5), and Group D, Canada (5-1), Dominican Republic (4-2) and U.S. Virgin Islands (2-4), form Group F. The three second-round windows of competition will take place Sept. 13-17, 2018; Nov. 29-Dec. 3, 2018; and Feb. 21-25, 2019.
Following completion of the Americas second-round games, seven teams will qualify out of the zone for the 2019 FIBA World Cup, including the top three finishing teams from Group E and Group F, and the top rated fourth placed team between Group E and Group F.
Under FIBA’s new competition system, a total of 80 national teams from FIBA’s four regions of Africa, Americas, Asia (which now includes Oceania) and Europe initially competed in the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Qualifying first round looking to earn a qualifying berth into the 32-team 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup competition that will be held Aug. 31-Sept. 15 in China.
The FIBA World Cup Qualifying games are being used to qualify 31 of the 32 nations that will compete in the 2019 FIBA World Cup. China automatically qualified as the host nation of the 2019 FIBA World Cup.
Five teams will qualify from Africa, seven teams from the Americas, seven teams from Asia and 12 teams from Europe.
The current two-time defending World Cup champion USA men have participated in 17 FIBA World Cups and have collected 12 medals - five gold medals (1954, 1986, 1994, 2010 and 2014), three silver medals (1950, 1959 and 1982) and four bronze medals (1974, 1990, 1998 and 2006). USA teams own an overall record of 123-27.
Results from the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 will qualify seven teams for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Additionally, Olympic host, Japan, automatically qualified, and the final four nations will qualify through four FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournaments that will be held in 2020 in advance of the Olympics.