Official Release | February 8, 2018

FOR  IMMEDIATE  RELEASE / February 8, 2018
For additional information, contact Craig Miller, Caroline Williams, Jenny Johnston or Trenton Miller at USA Basketball (719) 590-4800.

Fourteen Athletes Set To Attend February USA Men’s World Cup Qualifying Team Training Camp

— Training Camp To Determine USA Team for February World Cup Qualifying
First Round Games —

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado (Feb. 8, 2018) – Including three players from the 2017 USA Basketball World Cup Qualifying Team that compiled a 2-0 record during the November first-round games, and featuring the 13 players selected for the Feb. 18 G League International Challenge, USA Basketball today announced the 14 players who will participate in the USA World Cup Qualifying Team training camp Feb. 15-20. The training will be used to select the 12-man team for the USA’s World Cup Qualifying first round, second-window games including Cuba on Feb. 23 and Puerto Rico on Feb. 26 in Santa Cruz, California. The player selections were made by the USA Basketball Men’s World Cup Qualifying Team Committee.

Returning to contend for a USA roster spot from the November USA World Cup Qualifying Team are: Semaj Christon (free agent); Larry Drew II (Sioux Falls Skyforce); and Travis Wear (South Bay Lakers).

Rounding out the USA training camp roster are Taylor Braun (Salt Lake City Stars); Alonzo Gee (Sioux Falls Skyforce); Aaron Harrison (Reno Bighorns); Terrence Jones (Santa Cruz Warriors); Trey McKinney Jones (Fort Wayne Mad Ants); Rodney Purvis (Lakeland Magic); Xavier Silas (Northern Arizona Suns); David Stockton (Reno Bighorns); Rashawn Thomas (Oklahoma City Blue); Marcus Thornton (Canton Charge); and Devin Williams (Maine Red Claws).

Jeff Van Gundy, who led the USA to a 5-0 record and the gold medal at the 2017 FIBA AmeriCup and to a pair of wins in the FIBA World Cup Qualifying November window, returns as head coach of the USA Basketball Men’s World Cup Qualifying Team. Veteran international coach Mo McHone and former Georgetown University coach John Thompson III will again serve as USA assistant coaches.

“The USA team for the February FIBA World Cup Qualifying games will have some new faces,” said Van Gundy. “A lot of the players involved in the November World Cup Qualifying games were unavailable because of call-ups to the NBA. We’re really excited for those players, but it does make our job of putting together another team more difficult.

“The USA Basketball World Cup Qualifying Team Committee has assembled for our February training and games a versatile group that has a nice mix of youth and experience, that is highlighted by our three returning players from the November USA World Cup Qualifying Team.

“We’ll need to quickly come together for our games against Cuba and Puerto Rico in Santa Cruz. We persevered to win a very difficult game against Puerto Rico in November, and Cuba is also very talented and hungry for a win. We will face significant challenges in both of the upcoming games and I’m hoping that playing in Santa Cruz will give us a strong home court advantage. I know each and every one of us is excited and honored to represent the United States and we’re excited to play Puerto Rico and Cuba.”

The USA official, 12-member USA team is expected to be announced following the Feb. 20 evening practice. The USA World Cup Qualifying Team will continue its training in Santa Cruz on Feb. 21, 22, 24 and 25.

The USA will host two home games during the second window of the FIBA World Cup Qualifying first-round. The USA men will play Cuba on Feb. 23, and Puerto Rico on Feb. 26 in Santa Cruz on the home court of the G League Santa Cruz Warriors – Kaiser Permanente Arena. Both games are scheduled to tip at 8 p.m. PST.

Tickets for both USA Basketball games in Santa Cruz are on sale and available by calling (831) 713-4400 or online at http://bit.ly/USABsantacruz.

Thirteen of the USA players and the USA coaching staff have been named to the NBA G League USA team that will participate in the G League International Challenge. The Challenge is an exhibition game featuring the USA G League players versus the Mexican National Team. The game is scheduled for Feb. 18, 1 p.m. PST, during the NBA All-Star Weekend and will be held at the Los Angeles Convention Center.


  • Six players have prior USA Basketball experience: Christon (2017 USA World Cup Qualifying Team-November); Drew (2017 USA World Cup Qualifying Team-November and 2017 USA AmeriCup Team); Harrison (2013 USA Nike Hoop Summit Team); Jones (2015 USA Basketball Showcase White Team, and 2010 Nike Hoop Summit Team); Purvis (2012 USA U18 National Team); and Wear (2017 USA World Cup Qualifying Team-November and 2008 USA U18 National Team).
  • Eight of the 14 USA players possess NBA experience, including: Christon (64 games); Drew (15 games); Gee (417); Harrison (26 games); Jones (232 games); Silas (two games); Stockton (three games); and Wear (51 games).
  • All 14 selected players boast of NBA G League playing experience; and 13 – Braun, Drew, Gee, Harrison, Jones, McKinney Jones, Purvis, Silas, Stockton, Thomas, Thornton, Wear and Williams – are currently active in the G League.
  • Ten of the players have played professionally overseas: Braun, Christon, Drew, Gee, Jones, Silas, Stockton, Thornton, Wear and Williams.

The USA currently owns a 2-0 record and sits atop of the FIBA Americas World Cup Qualifying first-round Group C standings after defeating Puerto Rico 85-78 on Nov. 23 and Mexico 91-55 on Nov. 26. Puerto Rico (1-1) and Mexico (1-1) currently list tied for second in the Group C standings, while Cuba (0-2) is fourth.

In the third and final first-round window of the World Cup Qualifying, the USA will play two away games, at Mexico on June 28, 2018, and at Cuba on July 1, 2018.

After completion of the first round, the top three finishing teams in each of the four, Americas first-round groups advance to the second round. The three advancing teams from Group A and Group C will form Group E, while the top three finishers from Group B and Group D will form Group F.  The three second-round windows of competition will take place Sept. 13-17, 2018; Nov. 29-Dec. 3, 2018; and Feb. 21-25, 2019.

Following completion of the Americas second-round games, seven teams will qualify out of the zone for the 2019 FIBA World Cup, including the top three finishing teams from second-round Group E and Group F, and the best fourth placed team between Group E and Group F.

Under FIBA’s new competition system, a total of 80 national teams from FIBA’s four regions of Africa, Americas, Asia (which now includes Oceania) and Europe are competing in the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Qualifiers over 15 months looking to earn a qualifying berth in the 32-team 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup competition that will be held Aug. 31-Sept. 15 in China.

The FIBA World Cup Qualifying games are being used to qualify 31 of the 32 nations that will compete in the 2019 FIBA World Cup. China automatically qualified as the host nation of the 2019 FIBA World Cup.

Five teams will qualify from Africa, seven teams from the Americas, seven teams from Asia (which now includes Oceania) and 12 European teams will also qualify.

The current two-time defending FIBA World Cup champion, the USA men have participated in 17 FIBA World Cups and have collected 12 medals – five gold medals (1954, 1986, 1994, 2010 and 2014), 3 silver medals (1950, 1959 and 1982) and four bronze medals (1974, 1990, 1998 and 2006). USA teams own an overall record of 123-27.

Results from the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 will qualify seven teams for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. The top two finishing teams in the World Cup from the Americas and Europe, as well as the top finisher from Africa, Asia and Oceania will earn Olympic qualifying berths. Additionally, Olympic host, Japan, automatically qualified. The final four nations will qualify through four FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournaments that will be held in 2020 in advance of the Olympics.

Members of the USA Basketball Men’s World Cup Qualifying Committee include: Chair Sean Ford (USA Basketball), Trajan Langdon (NBA G League), Adam Simon (NBA G League), Gersson Rosas (At-Large), Brad Walker (NBA G League) and Damien Wilkins (athlete representative).

About USA Basketball

Based in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and chaired by retired Gen. Martin Dempsey, USA Basketball is a nonprofit organization and the national governing body for basketball in the United States. As the recognized governing body for basketball in the U.S. by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), USA Basketball is responsible for the selection, training and fielding of USA national teams that compete in FIBA-sponsored five-on-five and 3×3 international competitions, as well as for some national competitions and for the development of youth basketball.

The USA Basketball Youth Development division is tasked with the development of youth basketball initiatives that address player development, coach education and safety, while promoting, growing, and elevating the game. USA Basketball is committed to providing youth throughout the country safe, fun and developmentally appropriate environments in which they can enjoy the game. Current USA Basketball youth initiatives include coach licensing and education; organization accreditation; coach academies; regional camps; youth clinics; open court programs; Women in the Game conferences; and the U.S. Open Basketball Championships.

Connect with USA Basketball at USAB.com and on Facebook (USABasketball and USABYouth), Twitter (@usabasketball, @USABYouth, @USAB3x3), Instagram (@USABasketball) and YouTube (therealusabasketball).

2018 USA World Cup Qualifying Team Training Camp Roster

NAME                       POS   HGT  WGT AGE    2017-18 TEAM/COLLEGE                                

Taylor Braun                 F       6-7     210      26     Salt Lake City Stars / North Dakota State

Semaj Christon              G      6-3     190      25     Free Agent / Xavier

Larry Drew II                G      6-2     180      27     Sioux Falls Skyforce / UCLA

Alonzo Gee                   F       6-6     220      30     Sioux Falls Skyforce / Alabama

Aaron Harrison             G      6-6     209      23     Reno Bighorns / Kentucky

Terrence Jones              C       6-9     255      26     Santa Cruz Warriors / Kentucky

Trey McKinney Jones   F       6-5     220      27     Fort Wayne Mad Ants /  Miami

Rodney Purvis               G      6-4     205      23     Lakeland Magic / Connecticut

Xavier Silas                   F       6-5     198      30     Northern Arizona Suns / Northern Illinois

David Stockton             G      5-11   165      26     Reno Bighorns / Gonzaga

Rashawn Thomas          F       6-8     230      23     Oklahoma City Blue / Texas A&M-Corpus Christi

Marcus Thornton           G      6-4     190      24     Canton Charge / William & Mary

Travis Wear                   F       6-10   229      27     South Bay Lakers / UCLA

Devin Williams             F       6-9     255      23     Maine Red Claws / West Virginia

Head Coach:  Jeff Van Gundy, USA Basketball
Assistant Coach:  Mo McHone, USA Basketball
Assistant Coach:  John Thompson III, USA Basketball
Athletic Trainer:  Ed Lacerte, ProSports Therapy, Inc. (Waltham and Westford, MA)
Team Scout:  Ken McDonald
Video Coordinator:  Brad Jones
NOTE: Ages listed for athletes are as of Feb. 26, 2018.

2018 USA World Cup Qualifying Team Training/Game Schedule

Thursday, February 15
6-8:30 p.m. (PST)                 Practice          USC Women’s Practice Court, Galen Center

 Friday, February 16
1-3 p.m. (PST)                      Practice            Los Angeles Convention Center, Los Angeles, CA

 Saturday, February 17
10 a.m.-1 p.m. (PST)            Practice           USC Men’s Practice Court, Galen Center


Sunday, February 18
1 p.m. (PST)    G League International    Los Angeles Convention Center, Los Angeles, CA
Showcase: USA vs. Mexico

Monday, February 19
5:30-8:30 p.m. (PST)       Practice        Los Angeles Clippers Practice Facility, Los Angeles, CA

Tuesday, February 20
9:30-11:30 a.m. (PST)      Practice        Los Angeles Clippers Practice Facility, Los Angeles, CA
6-8 p.m. (PST)  Practice/Scrimmage   Los Angeles Clippers Practice Facility, Los Angeles, CA

Wednesday, February 21
5:30-7:30 p.m. (PST)            Practice             Kaiser Permanente Arena, Santa Cruz, CA

Thursday, February 22
11 a.m.-1 p.m. (PST)            Practice               Kaiser Permanente Arena, Santa Cruz, CA

Friday, February 23
8 p.m. (PST)        USA vs. Cuba                   Kaiser Permanente Arena, Santa Cruz, CA

Saturday, February 24
11 a.m.-1 p.m. (PST)            Practice               Kaiser Permanente Arena, Santa Cruz, CA

Sunday, February 25
11 a.m.-1 p.m. (PST)            Practice               Kaiser Permanente Arena, Santa Cruz, CA

Monday, February 26
8 p.m. (PST)    USA vs Puerto Rico          Kaiser Permanente Arena, Santa Cruz, CA

* USC Galen Center (3400 South Figueroa Street, Los Angeles, CA  90089)
* Los Angeles Convention Center (1201 South Figueroa Street, Los Angeles, CA  90015)
* Los Angeles Clippers Practice Facility (6951 South Centinela Avenue, Playa Vista, CA  90094)
* Kaiser Permanente Arena (140 Front Street, Santa Cruz, CA  95060)
*All times listed are PST.
*All practice times are subject to change.