Aug 1, 2014; Las Vegas, NV, USA; USA Team White center Andre Drummond looks on as teammate Paul George is tended to after suffering a leg injury during the USA Basketball Showcase at Thomas & Mack Center. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Andre Drummond stuck as at least third-, probably fourth-, string center for Team USA

Andre Drummond beat the odds to make Team USA’s World Cup roster, and that pleased me a great deal.

I’m happy Drummond received the recognition he deserved. I’m happy he’ll get valuable experience around other elite players.

And I could stop right there.

But now that Drummond made the team, I was at least hoping for a little more – Drummond to join the rotation.

Unfortunately, that seems unlikely.

Marc Stein of ESPN:

Team USA coach Mike Krzyzewski told ESPN.com this week that Cousins has cemented himself as the backup to starting center Anthony Davis.

Anthony Davis deserves to start. He’s unquestionably the Americans’ best big man. After him, it gets a little murky.

DeMarcus Cousins and Andre Drummond are both underrated and incomplete, and I could go back and forth about which player is better. Right now, the older Cousins probably has the edge, so I don’t begrudge Krzyzewski for naming him the backup.

But both are better than Mason Plumlee, the team’s other center and a Coach K favorite dating back to their time together at Duke. I thought if Plumlee won the backup job over Cousins – possible due to Krzyzewski’s preferences – Drummond could then eventually overtake Plumlee based on merit. (Of course, Cousins would have had a chance to do the same thing.)

Alas, it wasn’t meant to be. Drummond is on the outside of the rotation looking in, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Plumlee has the upper hand. But now, passing Plumlee still wouldn’t be a ticket to playing time.

On the bright side, the Americans should be in enough blowouts that Drummond will see the court anyway.

Tags: Andre Drummond Anthony Davis Demarcus Cousins Mason Plumlee Mike Krzyzewski

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