After much speculation, it is now official: former Kentucky standout Anthony Davis will officially be part of the 18-man pool for the 2012 Olympic roster, Jerry Colangelo of USA Basketball announced Monday.
The team recently received an extension from the USOC on when the 12-man basketball roster is to be finalized, now pushing the date to July 7.
Oklahoma City Thunder guard James Harden was also added to the pool.
Davis averaged 14.3 points, 10 rebounds, and 4.7 blocks this past season for the national-champion Kentucky Wildcats, on his way to winning National Freshman and National Player of the Year awards.
With injuries in the United States frontcourt, first to Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard, and now a undetermined timetable for the return of Miami Heat forward Chris Bosh, chatter began to pick up that Davis could be a suitable replacement.
The most appealing part of his game is the fact that he could make an impact at the international level without touching the ball on the offensive end.
With scorers like Kevin Durant, LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, and Dwayne Wade, the United States doesn’t need another player who needs the basketball in his hands to affect a game.
That’s where Davis, who proved to be a defensive stopper at Kentucky, could fill in. Imagine a lineup on the floor with James, Bryant, and Durant scoring on the offensive end, with Davis and NBA Defensive Player of the Year Tyson Chandler around the basket?
The United States has fallen into a trap in the past of having an impressive collection of talent, while struggling to find team chemistry or have pieces that fit together properly.
Davis could be a step in the right direction.