Chandler Parsons got squeezed out by size.
When Kevin Durant unexpectedly quit the U.S. National Team, it seemed to assure a roster spot for the new Mavericks’ small forward. But when the final 12-man roster was announced for the American team headed this week to Spain for the World Cup, Parsons was cut in favor of a desire for size.
Damian Lillard, Kyle Korver and Gordan Hayward were also released, as coach Mike Krzyzewski went with bigger, lesser-skilled big men such as Mason Plumlee, Andre Drummond and Kenneth Faried.
The U.S. will play nine games between Aug. 30-Sept. 14 and could face the host nation and its formidable front line of Marc Gasol, Pau Gasol and Serge Ibaka.
With Durant gone and Paul George out after his gruesome broken leg, Parsons’ skill set – perimeter shooting and dribble-driving – seemed to have logically increased his chances of making the team. But Krzyzewski’s need for size over skill led to Parson’s release in favor of Drummond, and for DeMar DeRozan to win a spot over a quicker, smaller guard like Lillard.
Without George and Durant – in addition to the pull-outs of Kevin Love, Blake Griffin, LaMarcus Aldridge, Russell Westbrook and LeBron James – it wouldn’t be shocking if the Americans didn’t win the tournament that they’ve owned for years.
A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.