As stars continue to drop out of the FIBA World Cup, Julius Randle is looking like a prime candidate to go to China.
According to Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinal, Andre Drummond and Montrezl Harrell are backing out of Team USA’s FIBA Word Cup training camp. That opens the door for New York Knicks forward Julius Randle.
As of Thursday afternoon, there are 16 players vying for the 12 roster spots on the team heading to China. In all likelihood, head coach Gregg Popovich will bring three big men on the roster.
With Drummond and Harrell dropping out, Randle will be fighting for a spot against Brook Lopez, Bam Adebayo, Mason Plumlee, and Myles Turner.
Lopez feels like a safe bet to make the team due to his veteran status and ability to stretch the floor. Myles Turner’s defense will probably be enough to secure a spot as well.
That leaves Plumlee, Adebayo, and Randle fighting for the final spot. While Plumlee won a gold medal with Team USA at the 2014 FIBA World Cup, it’s hard to see him beating out Adebayo or Randle on the 12-man.
Knicks fans have to like Randle’s chances at this point. However, there could be more dropouts in the coming days. Harrell and Drummond are hardly the first two players to back out of the World Cup. Anthony Davis, James Harden, and Bradley Beal, among a number of other stars, have pulled out as well.
In addition to Randle, Mitchell Robinson will be heading to Team USA training camp as well as he will play with the USA Select Team.
The final roster will be announced on Aug. 17.
Check out our latest pod where we talk free agency for Melo, Lin, J.R. Smith and do a little on FIBA for Randle, Ntilikina, Barrett, and Mitch https://t.co/XQHNfNYbRr
— Danny Small (@dwsmall8) August 1, 2019