On Sunday, Turkish National Team head coach Ergin Ataman unveiled the roster of 14 players who will travel to Manila in two weeks for one of three FIBA World Olympic Qualifying Tournaments. Included on that list was Furkan Korkmaz, the 18-year-old swingman acquired by the Sixers with the 26th-overall pick in this week’s NBA Draft.
Korkmaz, who has played professionally in his native Turkey since 2012, earned gold, silver, and bronze medals with the Turkish National Team’s Under-18 and Under-19 squads in 2014 and 2015. This will be his first appearance with the country’s primary squad. The 6’8" sharpshooter figures to log minutes as a reserve behind Anadolu Efes teammate and 2015 draftee (31st-overall by Minnesota, later traded to Cleveland) Cedi Osman. Korkmaz averaged 4.3 points and 1.2 rebounds in 11.6 minutes per game with Efes in 2015-16, shooting 45.7% from the floor and 39.8% from beyond the arc.
Turkey begins play in the Philippines on July 5 against Canada, a team that will be without Andrew Wiggins, Kelly Olynyk, Andrew Nicholson, Dwight Powell, and Sixers guard Nik Stauskas due to a combination of injuries, contract situations, and other extenuating circumstances. In addition to Canada, the tournament features Senegal, France, New Zealand, and the Philippines. Of those six teams, only one will qualify for the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
It should be noted that Dario Saric and his Croatian squad will face a similar test, taking on Greece, Mexico, Iran, Tunisia, and Italy in a tournament in Turin, Italy in early July that will determine which of those six teams earns a trip to Brazil in August.