League sources confirmed that Jamal Murray had confirmed his previous commitment to Team Canada the athleteand is a standout in the 18-man deep unit that was included in the Canadians’ roster for this summer’s FIBA Finals.
Teams could eventually only take 12 players to the World Cup.
There has been some question about Murray’s World Cup readiness due to his long playoff career with the World Champion Denver Nuggets and his injury history, and although Canada’s creation of a stretch roster still left room for Murray to drop out, league sources said he expressed Team Canada’s delight at the opportunity. Deep running in the World Cup.
On Canada’s expanded roster are Murray, Shay Gilgos-Alexander, Dillon Brooks, RJ Barrett, Logguintz-Dorte, Nickel Alexander-Walker, Kelly Olynyk, O’Shay Brissett, Corey Joseph and Dwight Powell of the NBA and Zack Eddy of major college basketball.
Notable NBA players not included in Team Canada’s roster are Andrew Wiggins, Benedict Mathurin, Shaddoon Sharpe, and Andrew Nimbard.
Murray, 26, who was born in Kitchener, Ontario, averaged 26.1 points and 7.1 assists during the playoffs for the Nuggets along with Nikola Jokić, forming one punch that was ultimately too much for the rest of the NBA. He averaged 20.0 points in 65 games during the regular season – after missing a year and a half with a torn knee ligament in the spring of 2021.
Jamal Murray’s grueling path to an NBA title made the long-conceived moment even sweeter
Team Canada goes through a cycle where it requires three-year commitments from its players, in an effort to build continuity and ensure the country is represented by as many NBA players as possible.
It’s a page of the playbook used for years by former Team USA managing director Jerry Colangelo that the Americans have since shied away from, and a plan devised by Canadian general manager Rowan Barrett and then-head coach Nick Nurse, who have since parted ways with Team Canada after being The Toronto Raptors kicked him out.
Murray, even though he didn’t play last season, made that commitment and attended Canadiens training camps last summer.
In addition, Murray is close to new Canadian national team coach Jordy Fernandez, who was an assistant in Denver under head coach Michael Malone and worked with Murray for years.
The easiest way to qualify is to appear well in the World Cup. Team Canada’s first match will be against world powerhouse France on August 25 in Jakarta, Indonesia.
(Photo: Rich Story/USA Today)
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