Myles Turner admits Team USA’s failure at FIBA World Cup will stick with them forever
The 2019 FIBA World Cup did not quite go as expected for Team USA.
Before the competition even began, marquee stars like Anthony Davis and James Harden declared that they would not be participating in an effort to rest their bodies and prepare for the 2019-20 NBA season. Just days before being selected for the World Cup team, Sacramento Kings point guard De’Aaron Fox pulled out of camp.
Coach Gregg Popovich’s team had quite the scare against a Turkey team that took them to overtime. After rattling off three straight wins and playing stifling defense during the group stage, Team USA was totally outplayed by France in the quarterfinals.
A second consecutive loss against Serbia meant that this was the worst major tournament finish in history for Team USA with NBA players involved, although they have already secured their spot in the 2020 Olympics.
Falling short of their gold-medal goal still comes with pain, something the Americans have had to deal with since losing to France in the quarterfinals on Wednesday, and something that won’t go away when they arrive back in the States on Sunday.
“That’s something,” Myles Turner admitted, “that’s going to stick with us for the rest of our lives.”
Many have just blamed the poor performances on the youth of the roster and the lack of star power. However, this was still a very talented roster, and Team USA looked overpowered at times.
Frank Ntilikina made Kemba Walker look like an average point guard in the quarterfinals, and the Serbians dominated the run of play for the majority of the game.
Although expectations were somewhat mitigated heading into the tournament, Turner and the rest of the Team USA roster will likely return to the U.S. with a bitter taste in their mouths.