US cuts world team to 12 after beating Puerto Rico

Posted at 08/23/2014 3:35 PM

NEW YORK - Derrick Rose earned a spot on the final 12-man US roster of NBA stars for the Basketball World Cup after helping the Americans rip Puerto Rico 112-86 Friday.

Rose sat out an exhibition victory two nights earlier over the Dominican Republic and there was concern about him after his having missed most of the past two NBA seasons due to knee surgeries.

But Rose had a strong effort with six points and four assists in 13 minutes at Madison Square Garden and was among those named to the final US lineup by coach Mike Krzyzewski and US national team managing director Jerry Colangelo.

Damian Lillard, Kyle Korver, Gordon Hayward and Chandler Parsons were trimmed from the lineup early Saturday to slice the American roster to the 12-man limit needed by next Friday, the eve of the start of the global showdown in Spain.

"The first thing is we are very pleased with the overall effort of every player who was a part of the process," said Krzyzewski. "To select 12 was difficult because our pool is so good.

"I'm excited about the 12 players selected and feel we have excellent versatility and the makings of a really good defensive team."

Chicago standout Rose will be joined by Golden State's Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, Sacramento's Rudy Gay and DeMarcus Cousins, Cleveland guard Kyrie Irving, Houston guard James Harden, Toronto's DeMar DeRozan, New Orleans' Anthony Davis, Detroit's Andre Drummond, Denver's Kenneth Faried and Brooklyn's Mason Plumlee.

"This was without doubt the most difficult selection process we've gone through," Colangelo said.

"Each player is incredibly talented, and each player offered us unique skills. In the end it was about assembling the best team, selecting guys who we felt would be able to best play the kind of style we envision this team playing."

The US men begin defending their world crown August 30 against Finland. A repeat win there would clinch a berth at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics.

The Americans, 3-0 in Basketball World Cup warm-up games, play a final exhibition Tuesday against Slovenia in Spain.

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