VanVleet to get consideration for the USA Olympic basketball team


TAMPA, FLORIDA – JANUARY 18: Fred VanVleet #23 of the Toronto Raptors looks to pass during a game against the Dallas Mavericks at Amalie Arena on January 18, 2021 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO/WQRF) — Fred VanVleet has accomplished a lot in his basketball career. One of the few things missing from the Rockford native’s resume is an Olympic medal. Just maybe he’ll get a chance to win one this summer if the Olympics go off as scheduled in Tokyo.

Doug Smith of the Toronto Star is reporting that VanVleet will be one of 60 players on USA Basketball’s expanded 60-man player pool that will be considered for the Olympic team.

Ultimately the roster will be paired down to 12 players who will actually make the team. The group of 60 players will be watched closely during the rest of the NBA season to see who might be a good fit for the team. Some will be invited to a tryout camp this summer.

Kevin Durant, LeBron James, James Harden, and Kyrie Irving are some of the NBA’s biggest stars who could be on the Olymic team. VanVleet isn’t in their category talent-wise, but the Olympic team selection committee and coaches often like to round out the roster with a player or two who are consummate team players who don’t necessarily need to score to be happy. A guy or two who will be more than happy to pass the ball and be a role player. That fits VanVleet. Plus we all know when he’s left open VanVleet can knock down ‘threes.’

VanVleet is currently averaging 19.1 points per game this season for the Toronto Raptors along with 6.4 assists and 4.5 rebounds per game.

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