- Kyle Lowry and Marvin Bagley III are the latest to withdraw from FIBA 2019
- Team USA still fields a roster with Kemba Walker, Donovan Mitchell and Jayson Tatum
- A lot of other teams like Canada, Spain and Greece are missing NBA stars too
Could USA basketball be in trouble? It’s a question that’s rarely been asked ever since NBA players started playing for the United States internationally. But the 2019 FIBA World Cup team is losing players by the minute and is suddenly thin on talent.
Should bettors wager against Team USA as their odds drop, or is there just more value with them at this point?
2019 FIBA Championship Odds
|Team||Odds to Win 2020 FIBA Championship at BetOnline*|
*Odds as of 13/08/2019.
Lowry, Bagley Drop Out
Kyle Lowry and Marvin Bagley III were the latest players to announce that they would be sitting out the 2019 FIBA World Cup. This news came on Monday as the two players pulled themselves out of consideration for various reasons. That now brings the pool of players in the running for the final 12-man roster down to 15 players.
The challenge is that, when you look at this potential roster, we’re a long ways away from the 1992 Dream Team. There’s no LeBron James, Paul George, James Harden, Russell Westbrook, Anthony Davis. or Kawhi Leonard. That’s why Team USA’s odds have dropped from -400. The remaining 15 players in the mix are …
Potential Team USA Members
|Harrison Barnes (Kings)||27|
|Jaylen Brown (Celtics)||22|
|De’Aaron Fox (Kings)||21|
|Joe Harris (Nets)||27|
|Kyle Kuzma (Lakers)||24|
|Brook Lopez (Bucks)||31|
|Khris Middleton (Bucks)||28|
|Donovan Mitchell (Jazz)||22|
|Mason Plumlee (Nuggets)||29|
|Marcus Smart (Celtics)||25|
|Jayson Tatum (Celtics)||21|
|P.J. Tucker (Rockets)||34|
|Myles Turner (Pacers)||23|
|Kemba Walker (Celtics)||29|
|Derrick White (Spurs)||25|
USA Not The Only Team With Dropouts
If the United States actually went with what’s mentioned above and the other teams kept their rosters intact, it could have been a very interesting tournament. For example, Canada now has R.J. Barrett, Andrew Wiggins, Tristan Thompson, Jamal Murray and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander in the Association.
However, all of those players have pulled out – along with Dwight Powell and Brandon Clarke – so they have, basically, nobody.
Greece could be a strong team but Giannis Antetokounmpo is not playing. Spain would be a challenging team too, but they’re without Serge Ibaka, Nikola Mirotic and Pau Gasol.
In sum, the Americans aren’t the only team with dropouts. A number of NBA players are not participating, so the USA Team B squad could still be able to dominate.
Starting Lineup Should Still Be Strong
We’re probably still looking at a starting lineup of Kemba Walker, Donovan Mitchell, Jayson Tatum, Kyle Kuzma and Myles Turner. Then you have a whole host of players that can come in off the bench and create matchup problems.
Is this the best team the United States can field? Clearly not. However, they’re still the clear-cut favorite and there’s a lot of young talent on this squad. Keep in mind that many of these guys wouldn’t make the big-league team if all the superstars came to play, so the youngsters will be excited to represent.
Chemistry is the lone concern as teams like Serbia, Spain and Argentina are like glue whereas this team has been recently been put together. Even so, leave to head coach Gregg Popovich and an All-Star staff on the sidelines to work this out. I’m not betting against U.S. basketball in any capacity.
Let's have fun and keep it civil.