Bucks: Michael Carter-Williams scores 13 in Showcase


Michael Carter-Williams of the Milwaukee Bucks got dunked on Thursday night in the USA Basketball Showcase at Thomas & Mack Arena in Las Vegas, but Carter-Williams and the White squad got the last laugh with a 134-128 win.

In a game absent many of the top U.S. stars—LeBron James, Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and others opted out—big men DeMarcus Cousins of the Sacramento Kings and Andre Drummond of the Detroit Pistons stole the show.

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Cousins finished with 24 points, 11 rebounds and three steals for the victorious White squad, while Drummond had game-highs of 27 points and 16 rebounds for the Blue team.

Victor Oladipo of the Orlando Magic finished with 25 points, nine rebounds and five assists—and one monster jam over Carter-Williams.

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Carter-Williams, the lone member of the Bucks in the USA Basketball mini-camp this week, scored 13 points on 5-of-10 shooting to go with five rebounds, three assists and a steal in 26 minutes.

Cousins helped the White side ice the game with a put-back dunk of a missed Carter-Williams 3-pointer that gave the White squad a 134-124 edge with 41.5 seconds left.

Harrison Barnes of the Golden State Warriors scored 21 points and had 10 rebounds for the Blues, DeMar DeRozan of the Toronto Raptors added 15 points and six assists and Kenneth Faried of the Denver Nuggets scored 11 points with nine rebounds and five dimes.

Eight of the nine players on the White team scored in double figures, including Mason Plumlee of the Portland Trail Blazers (20 points, 11 rebounds, three steals), Terrence Jones of the Houston Rockets (18 points), Blake Griffin of the Los Angeles Clippers (15 points, seven rebounds, four assists), Klay Thompson of Golden State (15 points, six assists), Kawhi Leonard of the San Antonio Spurs (14 points) and Arron Afflalo of the New York Knicks (13 points). Draymond Green of the Warriors scored only rwo points but dished out a game-high 10 assists.

“We had so many guys who could not play for a variety of reasons, but even those guys throughout the week were at practice,” coach Mike Krzyzewski said via the USA Basketball website.

Carter-Williams had a good time.

“It was great,” Carter-Williams said after the game. “I was just so thankful to be here, honestly. To put on a USA jersey, to play in front of the fans and just to compete is a blessing.

“It was a great game, both teams going back and forth. It is always nice when it gets competitive and we were just out there having a good time.”

Most importantly, the Showcase came off injury-free. It was at last year’s event in advance of the FIBA World Cup in Spain where Paul George of the Indiana Pacers sustained a broken leg that kept him out of 76 games last season and effectively undercut the Pacers’ chances of reaching the playoffs.

USA Basketball will take a different approach for the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro than was done before putting a team together for London in 2012.

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  • The final 12-man roster will be announced in June, rather than having a competitive tryout camp.

    The roster will be announced after the 2016 NBA Draft next June.

    The 2012 team in London won the gold medal and included Anthony, Kobe Bryant, Tyson Chandler, Anthony Davis, Durant, James Harden, Andre Iguodala, James, Kevin Love, Paul, Westbrook and Deron Williams.

    The Bucks haven’t had a player on a U.S. Olympic team since Michael Redd was on the gold-medal winning squad that went to Beijing in 2008. Ray Allen represented Milwaukee on the 2000 team that won gold in Sydney.

    The Rio Games will mark the seventh time USA Basketball has sent professionals to the Olympics.

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