SAN ANTONIO — San Antonio Spurs' Gregg Popovich and Team USA will be in action this summer with a pair of exhibition games.
In a press release, USA Basketball announced two domestic exhibition games leading into the 2019 FIBA World Cup for Men. The USA Men’s National Team will hold a Blue-White intra-squad exhibition game at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on Friday, Aug. 9, 7 p.m. (PDT) and will play international rival Spain with former Spurs center Pau Gasol on Friday, Aug. 16, 7 p.m. (PDT), at the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif.
And Popovich is ready to start the process of building team chemistry.
“The exhibitions games will help our team learn about each other and build the chemistry that is necessary in order to compete at the level required for the FIBA World Cup,” said USA and San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich. “The Blue-White game will be important in our process of determining the USA team, and playing an excellent and experienced international team like Spain will be a challenge and important in our preparations.”
Popovich, and the USA National Team will open its 2019 training on Aug. 5 in Las Vegas and will practice daily through Aug. 8 at UNLV’s Mendenhall Center. He will be assisted by NBA head coaches Steve Kerr (Golden State Warriors) and Nate McMillan (Indiana Pacers) and Villanova University head coach Jay Wright.
Team USA camp's roster will be comprised of some of the NBA's best including former Spur Kawhi Leonard, and Spurs guard DeMar DeRozan.
Popovich was named the new Team USA head coach in 2015 to replace Mike Krzyzewski.
“I’m extremely humbled and honored to have the opportunity to represent our country as the coach of the USA National Team,” said Popovich, a 1970 graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy. “What the program has accomplished over the last decade under the leadership of Jerry Colangelo and Mike Krzyzewski is truly impressive. I will do my utmost to maintain the high standards of success, class and character established by Jerry, Coach K and the many players who have sacrificed their time on behalf of USA Basketball.”
Popovich began his tenure as Team USA's head coach at the 2018 USA basketball mini-camp.
Tickets for the Las Vegas and Anaheim games go on sale Friday, March 15 at 10 a.m. (PDT). For ticket information visit usab.com/mnttickets.
(Via USAB press release)