Sacramento Kings forward Marvin Bagley III and San Antonio Spurs point guard Derrick White have been promoted to the Team USA roster in preparation for the FIBA World Cup, it was announced Saturday.
Bagley, who starred at Chatsworth Sierra Canyon High before playing at Duke, and White will replace Miami Heat center Bam Adebayo and Chicago Bulls forward Thaddeus Young, who were cut after a scrimmage Friday night in Las Vegas that Team USA won 97-78 over a select team of young NBA players.
Team USA will resume preparations for the World Cup on Tuesday at the Lakers’ training facility in El Segundo for three more days of practice before an exhibition game against Spain on Friday night at the Honda Center in Anaheim.
The Team USA roster is currently at 17 players, 12 of whom will make the cut for the World Cup, which runs Aug. 31-Sept. 15 in China.
“We’re still trying to figure out how people fit together,” Team USA coach Gregg Popovich told reporters after the scrimmage. “There are some players who are more talented than others, but a lot of jobs have to be filled. Overall, we’re looking for people who are committed defensively and are totally unselfish and are willing to move the ball and move themselves at the offensive end.”
Bagley will be fighting for a frontcourt position against Lakers power forward Kyle Kuzma, Milwaukee center Brook Lopez, Denver center Mason Plumlee and Indiana center Myles Turner.
White is competing against veteran guards such as Toronto’s Kyle Lowry, who is recovering from thumb surgery and has not practiced with the team, as well as Boston’s Kemba Walker, Donovan Mitchell (Utah), De’Aaron Fox (Sacramento) and Marcus Smart (Boston), who is currently sidelined with a sore left calf.
The rest of the roster includes guard Joe Harris (Brooklyn) and forwards Harrison Barnes (Sacramento), Jaylen Brown (Boston), Khris Middleton (Milwaukee), Jayson Tatum (Boston) and P.J. Tucker (Houston).
Like many players on the team, Kuzma raved about playing for Popovich, who has guided the San Antonio Spurs to five NBA championships.
“He’s my favorite coach of all time,” Kuzma said. “Growing up, I was a hoops junkie, watching a lot of the Spurs teams, and he’s won at every level he’s been at. So to be here and learn, to be around him, it’s really great.”
Internet and wire reports were used to compile this story.