Anthony Edwards is on the verge of changing into an American hero as he leads USA into the FIBA World Cup. [Image: Flickr.com / All-Pro Reels]
Anthony Edwards stars for USA
The checklist of plaudits for Anthony Edwards is continuous to develop as Staff USA beat Germany to complete its exhibition matches an ideal 5-0.
rapidly changing into the face of the group
Edwards, 22, dropped 34 factors within the USA’s 99-91 win over the Germans, who’re eighth in odds to win the upcoming FIBA World Cup. He helped the Individuals get better from a 16-point second-half deficit and is rapidly changing into the face of the group.
Regardless that Staff USA is a -125 favourite (per FanDuel Sportsbook) to win the upcoming event, there was an excessive amount of skepticism due to their roster, one that’s bereft of superstars and expertise on the worldwide stage. Edwards seems to be taking the problem personally and is rapidly changing into the face of the group.
Taking heart stage
Gone are the times of LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony, and different heroes of USA basketball that knew worldwide competitors just like the again of their arms. Zero gamers on the present iteration of the Stars and Stripes have any Olympic expertise, and a majority usually are not even thought-about the perfect participant on their NBA groups.
averaging a team-high 19.2 factors and led Staff USA in scoring in 4 of the 5 video games
As an alternative, Edwards slotted in subsequent to Jalen Brunson, Mikal Bridges, Brandon Ingram, and Jaren Jackson Jr. in what’s more and more trying like coach Steve Kerr’s optimum beginning 5. He completed the five-game warmup schedule averaging a team-high 19.2 factors and led Staff USA in scoring in 4 of the 5 video games.
Former NBA champion and present ESPN analyst Kendrick Perkins spoke glowingly of Edwards’ performances after his takeover recreation towards Germany, suggesting that he might grow to be the face of American basketball.
Whether or not or not he can ascend past the likes of Giannis Antetokounmpo, Luka Dončić, Steph Curry, and the opposite mainstays within the NBA, he has a golden alternative to boost his profile when the World Cup suggestions off Friday.
The USA solely managed a seventh-place end on the final FIBA Cup in 2019 after profitable the Gold within the two previous tournaments. It has additionally medaled in 13 of 17 tournaments, which places a ton of strain on a younger group that has by no means been on the stage earlier than. They’ll want a frontrunner to information them by means of, and Edwards appears just like the man.
NBA MVP possibilities rising?
Regardless of his excellent performances, Edwards is barely a three-year NBA veteran and has by no means received a playoff collection. He’s now being requested to be the perfect participant on a group that’s anticipated to defeat each nation in its means en path to a global Gold medal.
“Ant-Man” averaged 24.6 factors, 5.8 rebounds, and 4.4 assists for the Minnesota Timberwolves final season. He has fairly impressively taken on a higher defensive duty throughout his temporary stint with Staff USA and was a serious a part of the fourth-quarter defensive effort that helped the Individuals rip off an 18-0 run to come back again towards Germany.
He genuinely believes he’s the perfect participant within the fitness center each single night time.”
“He’s unquestionably the man,” Kerr stated. “You possibly can see he is aware of it. However now the group is aware of it, and I believe the followers see it… He genuinely believes he’s the perfect participant within the fitness center each single night time. And he’s such a dynamic younger participant. I believe he’s taking a leap.”
In the meantime, Edwards was thrilled together with his recreation towards Germany and is trying ahead to the USA’s first recreation towards New Zealand.
“Man, this was enjoyable,” stated Edwards. “I ain’t have enjoyable like this in a minute. So yeah, this was tremendous thrilling. We had been down , in order that was adversity.”
Edwards is already +6000 to win the NBA MVP within the upcoming 2023-24 season, which ties him for seventeenth in odds. As his inventory continues to soar, it could not be a shock to see him climb the desk.