Kevin Durant is no longer around, and neither are the likes of Blake Griffin, Kevin Love, DeMarcus Cousins and Paul George.

According to the very confident James Harden, and even head coach Mike Krzyzewski, the Bearded One could very well be the guy who assumes the leadership mantle for USA Basketball. Per CBS Sports:

“I think these past couple of years have prepared myself for this situation, seeing how I can lead a team in the (Houston) Rockets,” Harden said Tuesday.

 

And what has experience taught him? [...] “That I’m capable of leading a team,” he said. “Obviously, I’m still learning; I have a long way to go. But the first couple of steps are going to be good.”

 

“In Oklahoma City, I had a little leadership role, but I was the sixth man,” he said. “I didn’t have the majority of the say-so. Now, it’s prepared me in my game, being a leader, being able to talk to my coaches and better myself and coming out here and having confidence as a leader to kind of talk and communicate.” [...] “I love James,” Krzyzewski said. “We have a great, great relationship. And that communication between the two of us could translate to even better communication with the guys on the floor. … Since Kevin left, he’s asserted himself even more.”