19 Jan 2016

LeBron among expanded Dream Team squad for Rio

12:48 pm on 19 January 2016

LeBron James headlined a group of 30 finalists named by USA Basketball who will compete for a spot on the men's team that will be looking to defend their gold medal at this year's Rio Olympics.

LeBron James, 2015.

LeBron James, 2015. Photo: Photosport

Among the others vying for one of 12 roster spots are fellow program stalwarts Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry and Anthony Davis - all multiple gold medal winners in either the Olympics or World Cup - and a host of other familiar faces.

"The depth of talent that exists in the national team program is extraordinary," USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo said in a statement.

"Repeating as gold medalists at the 2016 Olympics will not be easy, but we feel confident that we have 30 finalists who offer amazing basketball abilities and special versatility."

The only notable omission is two-times Olympic gold medallist Kobe Bryant who has already announced plans to retire.

The official roster will be announced later this year.

The United States have won 14 of the 17 Olympic tournaments they have entered, including the last two with victories over Spain in the gold medal game.

The 30 finalists for the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team include: LaMarcus Aldridge (San Antonio Spurs); Anthony; Harrison Barnes (Golden State Warriors); Bradley Beal (Washington Wizards); Jimmy Butler (Chicago Bulls); Mike Conley (Memphis Grizzlies); DeMarcus Cousins (Sacramento Kings); Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors); Anthony Davis (New Orleans Pelicans); DeMar DeRozan (Toronto Raptors); Andre Drummond (Detroit Pistons); Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City Thunder); Kenneth Faried (Denver Nuggets); Rudy Gay (Sacramento Kings); Paul George (Indiana Pacers); Draymond Green (Golden State Warriors); Blake Griffin (Los Angeles Clippers); James Harden (Houston Rockets); Gordon Hayward (Utah Jazz); Dwight Howard (Houston Rockets); Andre Iguodala (Golden State Warriors); Kyrie Irving (Cleveland Cavaliers); James; DeAndre Jordan (Los Angeles Clippers); Kawhi Leonard (San Antonio Spurs); Kevin Love (Cleveland Cavaliers); Chris Paul (Los Angeles Clippers); Klay Thompson (Golden State Warriors); John Wall (Washington Wizards); and Russell Westbrook (Oklahoma City Thunder).

Again leading the 2016 USA coaching staff is Duke University's Naismith Hall of Fame head coach Mike Krzyzewski.

Serving as USA assistant coaches are Jim Boeheim (Syracuse University), Tom Thibodeau and Monty Williams (Oklahoma City Thunder).