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Will Spain shock Dream Team's possible final Olympic show?

07-10-2012 14:48 BJT

BEIJING, July 10 (Xinhua) -- The NBA stars stubbed US team start workout to defend their gold medal in London Olympics, and at the same time their rivals, Spain, also can't wait any longer.

The London Games may be the last edition for the United States to send a superstar-roster to the Olympics as NBA commissioner David Stern is looking to enter future Olympics with an under-23 team.

Though injuries have cut the list of 20 candidates to 14, with stars as Dwight Howard, Derrick Rose, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh ruled out, the US team is full of best professional players.

Kobe Bryant, considered as the best basketball player after Michael Jordan, will be joined by 2008 teammates LeBron James who just won his first NBA title with Miami. Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul and Deron Williams will be also in the squad once again led by Duke University coach Mike Krzyzewski.

The Oklahoma City Thunder trio, NBA scoring champion Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and James Harden, who missed their first NBA champion ring after losing to Miami in the final, will add more tactics options to Krzyzewski's guide book. Other candidates include Tyson Chandler, Kevin Love, Blake Griffin, Andre Iguodala, Rudy Gay and Eric Gordan.

Gold is always the US team's expectation, though it is not guaranteed. Teams like Spain, France, Argentina all boast starting lineups filled almost entirely with NBA talents.

The Spaniards will prove that physical talent isn't everything for an Olympic gold. Injuries have hurt US team's inside, while Spain has Pau and Marc Gasol. After losing in the Beijing Olympics final, Spain now will feature Oklahoma City's Serge Ibak, the NBA's top shot blocker of the last two seasons.

It will be the 22-year-old's first Olympics playing with Spain, which he helped guide to the European Championship title last summer soon after being nationalized.

France also got NBA talents as guard Tony Parker, who was cleared to play after suffering an eye injury in an altercation in a New York nightclub last month. It is good news for France coach Vincent Collet after the withdrawal of Bulls center Joakim Noah with a nagging ankle injury.

Britain, the host who will play basketball at the Olympics for the first time, will be led by NBA All-Star Loul Deng. The Chicago Bulls forward was named in a 12-man roster, which also includes former New Orleans Hornets center Pops Mensa-Bonsu. They will face a tough task of qualifying in the top four of a group which includes Spain, Russia, Australia, Brazil and China.

Team GB, however, beat China at the test event last year and only lost to traditional powerhouse Lithuania by two points in a friendly match in June.

Editor:James |Source: Xinhua

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