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Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Jamal Murray headline stacked Canadian training camp roster for Paris Olympics

2023 FIBA World Cup - USA Men's National Team v Canada - Bronze Medal Game

MANILA, PHILIPPINES - SEPTEMBER 10: Dillon Brooks #24 of Canada celebrates against the USA Men’s Senior National Team in the Bronze Medal Game as part of the 2023 FIBA World Cup on September 10, 2023 at Mall of Asia Arena in Manila, Philippines. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2023 NBAE (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

NBAE via Getty Images

Canada has a legitimate chance to medal in men’s basketball at the Paris Olympics — a year ago, it beat Team USA in the bronze medal game of the FIBA World Cup behind 39 points from Dillon Brooks and 31 points plus 12 assists from Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.

Canada announced its training camp roster for the Paris Olympics and this is a stacked team: The starting five could be Gilgeous-Alexander and Jamal Murray in the backcourt, Andrew Wiggins and Brooks on the wings with Kelly Olynyk as a stretch five, all coached by new Brooklyn Nets coach Jordi Fernandez. Off the bench, there could be RJ Barrett, Lu Dort, Andrew Nembhard, and more.

“While winning bronze at the World Cup last summer was an important first step for our team, it also showed that we still have work to do as a group,” Fernandez said in the announcement. “If you ask anyone within our team and program, we have a constant drive to improve and will work tirelessly throughout training camp and our exhibition schedule to fully prepare to achieve our ultimate goal at the Paris Olympics.”

The 20 players coming to training camp will eventually need to be paired down to a 12-man roster for the Paris Olympics, but Canada could have a roster of 11 NBA regular rotation players — including an MVP candidate in SGA — plus two-time college player of the year Zach Edey.

Canada will conduct a training camp in Toronto starting on June 28. After 10 days there, the team will fly to Las Vegas, where it will face Team USA in a showcase game on July 10. From there, it is on to Paris. In the Olympics, Canada is in Group A with Australia and two yet-to-be-determined teams coming out of qualifying tournaments (the winners of the tournaments in Greece and Spain).

While the USA is the heavy favorite heading to Paris with a veteran and stacked roster that includes LeBron James, Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant, Canada is a serious medal threat along with Serbia (assuming Nikola Jokic plays), the host France (which will have a front line of Rudy Gobert and Victor Wembanyama), and Germany (which won the World Cup last year).