As if Team USA weren’t already having enough trouble filling its roster for the World Cup.
Now Marcus Smart is injured.
Smart could still play in the World Cup. But he probably won’t push it if he’s hobbled. USA Basketball might also prioritize players who can practice.
The Americans are down to Kemba Walker, Donovan Mitchell, De’Aaron Fox and Kyle Lowry at guard. And Lowry is also hurt. Bigger wings Khris Middleton and Jaylen Brown can play guard fairly comfortably. But putting them in the backcourt would mean even less talent at forward.
This version of Team USA was already perilously ow on star power. Valuable role players like Smart were a way to compensate. Now, the U.S. won’t even have him, for at least a while.