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JaVale McGee to get cut again?


I heard they won't charge us admisson on Sunday. (Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE/Getty Images)


If Team USA's closed scrimmage against China was a sign of things to come, then that doesn't bode well for two players with connections to D.C. Wizards center JaVale McGee and former Georgetown star and Hyattesville native Jeff Green were both kept out of the game, which the United States handily won, 98-51, at Madison Square Garden on Saturday.

Coach Mike Krzyzewski tried to downplay the significance of the decision. When asked if the benchings were a negative for either player, Krzyzewski said, "I don't know what a negative is." He then added, "We already know what JaVale and Jeff can do."

But it wasn't a good sign for either player in such a lopsided game, in which the U.S. was hardly challenged by a Chinese team led by Wizards forward Yi Jianlian. Yi was the only player to score in double-figures for China, as he finished with a team-high 13 points and seven rebounds. And, the U.S. spent most of the game forcing turnovers and sprinting down the court for uncontested dunks and layups. The Americans dominated the third period, taking advantage of Yi's absence to outscore China, 35-8. With his team having its way, Krzyzewski never seemed interested in letting Green or McGee get garbage time.

Team USA has until Aug. 26 to select its final 12-man roster, but Krzyzewski said he wasn't sure when they would cut the remaining three players. McGee -- who was cut last month after the first training session in Las Vegas and was added only after Brook Lopez removed himself because of illness -- still has a chance of traveling with the team to Europe as insurance in case either starting center Tyson Chandler or Lamar Odom gets hurt. The U.S. will play France on Sunday in an exhibition game at Madison Square Garden before leaving for Spain.

"We want to go through tomorrow and not make decisions that we'll regret a week from now," Krzyzewski said. "A week from now, we'll be playing Lithuania (Aug. 21) and Spain (Aug. 22) in Madrid. And that type of situation will give us much more knowledge of how to pick the 12."

The game against France appears to be critical for both Green and McGee -- with them appearing to be obvious cuts, barring injuries -- but the other players on the bubble appear to be Stephen Curry, Eric Gordon or possibly Russell Westbrook given the wealth of point guard talent on the roster.

Krzyzewski said he was interested in seeing how the team would look with Chandler and Odom getting practically all of the time at center. But it had to be a little disconcerting for McGee when Krzyzewski sent in a lineup to start the final period with Kevin Durant -- yes, Kevin Durant -- at center as the team utilized a two-three zone. Krzyzewski said the "last period is all experimentation," but those experiments did not include McGee or Green.

Durant said he was little shocked to play center -- especially with China putting 7-foot-3 center Zhang Zhaoxu on the floor. "Coach wanted to try something different," Durant said. "Of course, I'm not used to playing the five, but it was fun, being the general on defense. Kind of being the guy in the driver's seat."

McGee said he didn't expect to sit the entire game. "They just said we are going to play four quarters," McGee said, when asked what he told before the game. "It's definitely disappointing not to play, but we got the win. So, it's whatever."

McGee said he was impressed with the play of his new teammate Yi. "He's a great player. He was the go-to player here and just doing his thing."

By Michael Lee  |  August 14, 2010; 11:52 PM ET
Categories:  JaVale McGee , Yi Jianlian  
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Next: JaVale McGee and Jeff Green officially cut from Team USA

Comments

PLEASE DURANT QUIT THIS TEAM IF YOU'RE GOING TO BE PLAYING CENTER. This is an accident injury waiting to happen. What the F88k is Couch K thinking, Kevin think of your NBA career.

Posted by: getagripped | August 15, 2010 8:59 AM | Report abuse

"PLEASE DURANT QUIT THIS TEAM IF YOU'RE GOING TO BE PLAYING CENTER. This is an accident injury waiting to happen. What the F88k is Couch K thinking, Kevin think of your NBA career.Posted by: getagripped"

Get a grip, getagripped.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 15, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

This is a good experience for Javale, and I would expect to see him against Spain and Lithuania. And I'd expect him to get cut and return rested for camp with the Wiz.

Is that a bad outcome? Not to me, it isn't.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 15, 2010 9:23 AM | Report abuse

Well, Yi is the best player on the Chinese team. But that really does not say much considering their second best player is Wang Zhizhi who spent his entire NBA career as bench warmer.

Posted by: sagaliba | August 15, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Odom, characterizing McGee's game as symbolic for run and jump is not astute at all to me.

Basketball is about run and jump. The game revolutionized itself when run and jump became a major part of it.

An uncanny statement at most but astute, absolutely not.

The running and jumping of a basketball player is an acquired skill. Acquired through repitition, practice, exercise, strength training, and natural size and talent plays a part.

Here we go again unwittingly taking away from and degrading athleticism over ones perceived lack of know how.

Gosh we fall for traps so easily.

The stuff shot, the jam, the dunk, revolutionized the game as well as did the jump hoop shot. So did the jump shot.

Why coudn't Odom have said that McGee shows great physical abilities for the game and could become one of he best big men on the court?

Oh nooo. The statement he made has a vieled smack at McGee's knowledge of the game which I don't see as being astute at all.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | August 15, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse

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Posted by: MimiAnsari | August 15, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

sorry, misspelled hook, should have said sky hook shot anyway. Have to make sure we make an attempt not to misspell things on here, for their are some that will point them out and call you names and question your education.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | August 15, 2010 12:23 PM | Report abuse

USA basketball announced an hour ago that Jeff Green and Javale McGee were cut from the team. They will not play against France at 1PM today.
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100815/ap_on_sp_bk_ne/bko_us_roster

I think the game will be shown on one of the ESPN channels.

Posted by: rickgonz | August 15, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

USA basketball announced an hour ago that Jeff Green and Javale McGee were cut from the team. They will not play against France at 1PM today."

Well, so much for Spain and Lithuania. I'm just as happy to see him getting ready for camp.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 15, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Once again the longest post about nothing goes to......

Basketball is more than run and jump. And it is about JaVale's knowledge of the game. It's accepted as truth by everyone except you. An athletic freak who doesn't understand the game and is not fundamentally sound yet. A key player on a championship team....but he doesn't know what he's talking about either right?

Posted by: SDMDTSU | August 15, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Screw Duke and their coach.

Yay Terps
Yay Wizards
and
Yay McGee!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: MimiAnsari | August 15, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Basketball is more than run and jump. And it is about JaVale's knowledge of the game. It's accepted as truth by everyone except you. An athletic freak who doesn't understand the game and is not fundamentally sound yet. A key player on a championship team....but he doesn't know what he's talking about either right?

Posted by: SDMDTSU | August 15, 2010 1:22 PM |

Interesting, very interesting. A strong argument in the affirmative isn't in the least hard to understand.

I just refuse to come to the conclusion myself that McGee knowledge of the game is suspect.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | August 15, 2010 7:22 PM | Report abuse

McGee's kwowledge...

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | August 15, 2010 7:33 PM | Report abuse

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