Angie: The Sports Authority

Welcome to Angie's sports blog! My interesting and funny articles will show you the most recent and interesting news in the sports world.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Basketball: Team USA training for the FIBA World Championship

The most important basketball tournament is about to start and many nations are getting ready for it. Even the USA Men’s Basketball Senior National Team, including assistant coach Jim Boeheim. They got back to training for the 2006 FIBA World Championship in Las Vegas, Nev., on July 31. It's important to know that head coach Mike Krzyzewski and his staff has four days to prepare the squad for an exhibition game against Puerto Rico on August 3.

As we know, this is the eighth time Boeheim has served on a USA coaching staff. During his previous stints with USA Basketball, the teams have compiled a 35-7 record, and won three gold medals, three silver medals and one bronze medal.

In fact, the USA Basketball Senior National squad opened training camp on July 19. At the conclusion of the intial workouts on July 25, the squad was cut to 15 players.

Since those were the rules, we can say that Carmelo Anthony, a member of the Denver Nuggets, is one of the 15 on the roster. Others selected include: Gilbert Arenas (Washington Wizards); Shane Battier (Houston Rockets); Chris Bosh (Toronto Raptors); Bruce Bowen (San Antonio Spurs); Elton Brand (Los Angeles Clippers); Kirk Hinrich (Chicago Bulls); Dwight Howard (Orlando Magic); LeBron James (Cleveland Cavaliers); Antawn Jamison (Washington Wizards); Joe Johnson (Atlanta Hawks); Brad Miller (Sacramento Kings); Chris Paul (New Orleans/ Oklahoma City Hornets); Amaré Stoudemire (Phoenix Suns); and Dwyane Wade (Miami Heat).

Anthony owns previous international competition experience. He was a member of the USA Basketball Senior Team in 2004 and made the roster for the 2004 Olympic team that won the bronze medal. And he also participated in the USA Junior World Championship in 2002, winning another bronze medal.

Next, the team travels to Guangzhou, China, for the China Basketball Challenge. The USA team will take on China on Aug. 7 and Brazil on Aug. 8. Following the two games, the team will travel to Korea for a few more days of training.

The final competition before the World Championship is the World Basketball Challenge 2006 held in Seoul, Korea. The USA will face Lithuania on Aug. 13 and Korea on Aug. 15. The games will all be held in Jamsil Gymnasium, the site of the 1988 Olympic Games basketball competition.

This is the first time that a USA senior men’s team compiled of NBA players has traveled to either China or Korea.

The 15 member roster has to be narrowed down to 12 players prior to the start of the World Championship on Aug. 13. The final 12 member team will participate in the FIBA World Championship in Japan on Aug. 19-Sept. 3. These games are held every four years and are considered international basketball’s most important competition. The USA team hopes to reclaim the gold medal that they last won in 1994. In 2002, the team placed sixth and in 1998 it got the third position.

We can confirm that the USA team will begin the World Championship against Puerto Rico (Aug. 19) and then take on China (Aug. 20), Slovenia (Aug. 22), Italy (Aug. 23) and Senegal (Aug 24). Following the round robin format, the top four squads in each group will advance to the next stage.