Several more national basketball teams have announced their 12-man rosters for the 2019 World Cup in China, including Team Japan, which will be led by a pair of NBA players, per a FIBA announcement.
Former Gonzaga forward Rui Hachimura, who was selected ninth overall by the Wizards in this year’s draft, is the headliner. He’ll be joined by Grizzlies swingman Yuta Watanabe, who is on a two-way contract in Memphis.
The Montenegro national team, meanwhile, is light on NBA players, but does include one notable name — Magic center Nikola Vucevic, who earned his first All-Star nod in 2018/19, will represent Montenegro as the program attempts to make its way out a tough first-round group that features Brazil, New Zealand, and Greece.
Here’s more on the World Cup, including a couple more roster announcements:
- The Dominican Republic (Twitter link) and Poland (Sportando link) also announced their respective 12-man World Cup squads. Neither roster features an NBA player.
- Although Team USA remains the overwhelming favorite to win the 2019 World Cup, Frank Urbina of HoopsHype ranks the top 25 players in the event and finds that three of his top four are from other countries. While Kemba Walker comes in at No. 3, Giannis Antetokounmpo (Greece) and Nikola Jokic (Serbia) rank ahead of him, with Rudy Gobert (France) at No. 4.
- Rodger Sherman and John Gonzalez of The Ringer debate how worried they should be about Team USA’s World Cup chances. Sherman still believes the club will claim gold in China, but Gonzalez is betting on the field.