As some of you may know, Saturday night featured a USA Basketball intrasquad scrimmage. Some of the biggest names and key-est players from the 2008 Olympic gold medal team are missing from the team this year, with LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh (The Triumvirate), Kobe Bryant, and Carmelo Anthony (among others) missing from this year's team. Although that's made for a less star-studded roster, there are plenty of good players preparing for the FIBA World Championships in Turkey - including, of course, our own Andre Iguodala.
I caught the last quarter and a half or so (White, led by Kevin Durant, won handily, 114-96), and I must say that the conclusions we can come to from this game are limited at best. It resembled an NBA All-Star Game somewhat (remember, those scores came in 10-minute periods), which is great to watch, but doesn't teach us much about what's going to happen when they run into teams that are actually interested in things like not allowing Durant to score a point every minute. Chris Sheridan, in fact, has a nice writeup on this topic.
As far as individual players are concerned, again, there wasn't too much to be learned. Durant was predictably brilliant, scoring in a variety of different ways even just in the short time I watched. Gerald Wallace looked decent, but writeups have indicated that this was a case of a small sample size.
Most importantly, Iguodala looked good, especially shooting. The two teams as a whole hit almost 50% of their threes (mostly due to the lack of defense, especially at the end of the game), but Iguodala himself connected on all three of his attempts. He didn't play particularly aggressively, spending several offensive possessions camping out on the perimeter and waiting for a kick-out. Toward the end of the game, defense on both ends consistently mostly of picking off over-ambitious or reckless passes, so there's not much to evaluate there.
On the whole, the scrimmage was fun to watch if you're the type who just likes to see some of the planet's best basketball players hoop it up in a semi-competitive setting (at least a few players will be cut from the team within the next day or two, so there's that element of meaning to the game), but not too much if you're looking actually evaluate anything.
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