The Dream Team, the Redeem Team, and now the Cream Team. As always it’s homage being paid to the Wu from yours truly so why not? Doesn’t really seem like it’s been 4 years since Kobe kept Team USA from losing to Spain in that Olympic Gold Medal Basketball game but it has been. A lot concerning the NBA/International basketball landscape has changed since then. Many players who were young upstarts then are now legit NBA stars and superstars, all of the superstars of that Redeem Team retain their titles and a couple of brand new guys may get a chance to run with the rock this summer (word to Peedi Peedi).
Before we can even get into if the “Cream Team” is head and shoulders above the rest of the world, we have to of course set a roster. The starting 5 probably would have been deadlocked if it weren’t for 2 major Adidas injuries this year to Dwight Howard and Derrick Rose, so with a little brainstorming and swishlogic this has to be what coach Shushefsky is thinking:
PG: Rajon Rondo. His knack for showing up/producing when it counts is unrivaled at the pg position. He is noted for being anti-Olympics so this may be a reach. Also, I know he lacks a consistent trey ball and the international teams will play primarily zone vs the USA, but I think Coach K would be a fool not to give this spot to Rondo.
SG: Kobe Bryant. Until proven otherwise, he is still the cream of the crop in the league at his position so he must get this spot. Internationally he may still be the most feared player on the planet.
SF: Kevin Durant. In this starting 5 he and Kobe will have to be the zone breakers. I’m sure a 7 footer with the range and shooting touch that Durant has would love to see a zone with 5’8″ Puerto Ricans at the top of it.
PF: LeBron James. He slides over to the 4, who knows what his natural position is anymore. These Playoffs he’s proven that he can literally do it all on the court. He and Rondo will have a field day getting out and sprinting past Serbians and Kenyans (maybe not Kenyans) in August.
C: Tyson Chandler. With Dwight out they need someone to patrol the middle especially against bigger, experienced teams such as Spain and Argentina. Tyson should fit that role to a T. And if I learned one thing about Tys this year it’s that you don’t have to run a single play for him, he’s content with crashing the boards, getting oops and blocking shots. Very important in this lineup.
Guards: Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Dwyane Wade, James Harden. Obviously Rondo’s lack of shooting can and might very well be exposed in the summer so a duo of backup guards who’ve been here before will prove vital. Kobe’s backups are the 2nd and 3rd best two guards in the league. Harden could have a breakout Olympics performance if he’s shooting it consistently. Common knowledge would tell you to never ever count DWade out, and he had a great summer of 08 so he’s got to be ready to do it again.
Chris Bosh, Kevin Love, Lamarcus Aldridge, Andre Igoudala(???).
Iight no backup centers here cuz the choices were really gonna be Boogie, Biggavels, or Bynum. Bosh has been here before, Kevin Love may be one of our top 5 players on the humble but we’ll bring him off the pine. As long as Lamarcus is healthy he should get the nod over Blake Griffin. One of my comrades said Iggy the Iguana should be included because he locks up (yes) and has the trey ball (no), so he gets to be a part of this. On the low, Anthony Davis could very well be included in this summer’s Olympic excursion.
We’re about 110% sure this will be the roster this summer. In comparison this team > Redeem Team. In comparison this team > Dream Team but I’m sleep. Could it be a cakewalk for the Cream Team, could it be a close finish like last time, or will we revert back to 04? Only time will tell. So enjoy the Finals but know we got a lot more hoop to discuss.