Kyrie Irving won't be going easy with the banter on his Team USA teammates

Published Add your comment

Football News

Team USA have united for the forthcoming Olympic Games in Rio this summer, but there is still bound to be some simmering rivalry between the 12-man roster, even if it is in the form of good-natured barbs.

The Cleveland Cavaliers became the first team in NBA history to recover from a 3-1 Finals deficit to defeat the reigning champions, the Golden State Warriors, in seven-game and secure their first ever NBA championship.

LeBron James was voted the Finals MVP and led both teams in points, rebounds, assists, steals and blocks for quite an incredible performance on the biggest stage of them all.

Have your say on GiveMeSport - NBA by taking part in our survey here:

However, his teammate Kyrie Irving also stepped up to the plate and dropped 41 points in game five, as well as nailing the dagger from deep that sealed the championship in the dying embers of game seven.

Irving is the only member of the Wine and Gold that has opted to head to Brazil this summer and don the stars and stripes, but there are three Golden State Warriors players to keep him company.

It appears as though Draymond Green, Klay Thompson and Harrison Barnes are in for a summer of cheeky jabs from their Finals foe turned Olympic teammate.

"There's a connection that we all share that's bonded for life of USA Basketball that allows us to be comfortable and being with one another," Irving said. "But, you know, there will be a few jabs thrown ... because there are three Warriors on this team, and I am the current champion, so I will be throwing it in their faces."

Team USA have amassed a great roster despite the likes of James, Stephen Curry, Russell Westbrook, Kawhi Leonard and Kobe Bryant turning down the opportunity to play, on top of injuries to Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and LaMarcus Aldridge amongst others.

At the guard spots, they boast Irving and Kyle Lowry with DeMar DeRozan, Klay Thompson and Jimmy Butler operating at the two spot. Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony, Harrison Barnes and Paul George are the small forwards, with Draymond Green the only out-and-out power forward in the ranks. That leaves DeAndre Jordan and DeMarcus Cousins at the pivot who offer juxtaposing attributes while manning the center.

Irving is correct about being the only champion in the 12-man roster, but he was also spot on with his assertion about the brotherhood that is developed while representing Team USA.

Plenty of lifelong friendships have been born representing the Red, White and Blue. Anthony, who is going for his third gold medal and fourth overall with Team USA this summer, revealed how close he and Kobe became during their time with the national side.

Speaking of their adventures to Beijing in 2008 and London in 2012, Anthony said: "I’d say that’s kind of when our friendship has really grown and started from there.

“It’s not just a basketball relationship.”

Kyrie Irving
Cleveland Cavaliers
Central Division
Eastern Conference
Kobe Bryant
L.A. Lakers
Pacific Division
Western Conference

Article Comments

Read more

Report author of article

Please let us know if you believe this article is in violation of our editorial policy, please only report articles for one of the following reasons.

Report author


This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

Want more content like this?

Like our GiveMeSport Facebook Page and you will get this directly to you.

Already Subscribed to Facebook, don't ask me again

Follow GiveMeSport on Twitter and you will get this directly to you.

Already Following, don't ask me again

Like our GiveMeSport - NBA Page and you will get this directly to you.

Already Subscribed to G+, don't ask me again