SGA, Murray, Barrett highlight Canada's 14-player 'summer core'

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Canada Basketball unveiled the player pool from which the rising international power will draw senior men's team talent through 2024.

Twelve of the 14 players in the "summer core" have experience in the world's top professional league, headlined by Oklahoma City Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Denver Nuggets guard Jamal Murray, and New York Knicks wing RJ Barrett.

Player Pos. Team
Nickeil Alexander-Walker G Utah Jazz
RJ Barrett G/F New York Knicks
Khem Birch C Toronto Raptors
Oshae Brissett F Indiana Pacers
Dillon Brooks G/F Memphis Grizzlies
Luguentz Dort G Oklahoma City Thunder
Zach Edey C Purdue (NCAA)
Melvin Ejim F Cedevita Olimpija (Slovenia)
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander G Oklahoma City Thunder
Cory Joseph G Detroit Pistons
Jamal Murray G Denver Nuggets
Kelly Olynyk F/C Detroit Pistons
Kevin Pangos G CSKA Moscow (Russia)
Dwight Powell F/C Dallas Mavericks

Players were required to commit to being available for Team Canada for three years, a span which includes the 2023 FIBA Basketball World Cup in the Philippines and the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

"If you commit you're in," Canadian national team and Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse said Tuesday, according to Sportsnet's Michael Grange. "If you don't commit, you're going to have to hope there is a spot."

Golden State Warriors wing Andrew Wiggins, whose once-frosty relationship with the national team thawed with his appearance in the Olympic qualifying tournament last summer, could not meet the program's three-year commitment. However, Nurse said the former No. 1 pick has not ruled out future national team duties, per Grange.

Other current NBA players absent from the pool are Chicago Bulls center Tristan Thompson, Raptors power forward Chris Boucher, Memphis Grizzlies big man Brandon Clarke, and Sacramento Kings big man Trey Lyles. Eighteen-year-old Shaedon Sharpe, a likely high lottery pick in June's NBA draft, was also omitted.

Canada's senior men's team currently ranks fifth in the Americas and 18th in the world. Despite boasting the second-highest population of active NBA players, the team finished 21st out of 32 teams at the 2019 FIBA World Cup and has not qualified for an Olympic tournament since Sydney 2000.

The program's next game is slated for July 1 - Canada Day - in Hamilton, Ontario, versus the Dominican Republic as part of the World Cup Americas Qualifiers.

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SGA, Murray, Barrett highlight Canada's 14-player 'summer core'
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