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Friday, September 3rd, 2010 at 9:00 am  |  39 responses

Eric Gordon to Start Over Chauncey Billups?

by Marcel Mutoni / @marcel_mutoni

Group play has ended for Team USA in the World Championship, and despite some inconsistent play, the squad is undefeated. One of the bright lights has been Eric Gordon, whose latest performance (during a romp of Tunisia) could bring the young shooting guard even more shine.

Coach Mike Krzyzewski admitted to reporters that Chauncey Billups’ spot in the starting lineup isn’t necessarily secure.

ESPN reports that Gordon could end up taking over for Billups as the tourney moves into the knockout stage:

Eric Gordon played so well in the second half Thursday against Tunisia, he may have earned himself a spot in the starting lineup … “Yeah, we’ll take a look at it. We’re always open for everything,” coach Mike Krzyzewski said after his team played sluggishly for the majority of the game before pulling away in the final 14 minutes — led by Gordon’s shooting — to defeat winless Tunisia 92-57 and finish preliminary-round play 5-0.

“I do think we’re going to make quicker subs,” Krzyzewski continued. “We’re going to get back to more of how we started and how we played the first two games of this pool. I didn’t think the confidence level of our bench was where it needed to be during the first part of the pool play, but I think it is now. And for us to win we’re going to need all 12 of those guys playing well, not just the starting unit.”

“I’m not really worried about that. I wasn’t expecting to start any games here,” Gordon said. “My role is to just come in the game and be effective shooting the ball. That’s what I came here to do.”

Shooting will become more and more critical for Team USA over the coming days, and with Billups currently playing out of position at the big guard spot, it may be time for Coach K to tinker with his starting lineup.

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  • Bo Diddly

    Mistake! Billups is the bedrock of that team and the young ones need his veteran leadership and decision making.

  • IAMORANGE4EVER

    I have a feeling the SEED is going to like this move. BOOK IT!

  • James

    I do hope that Derrick Rose keeps his starting job, for all we know, gordon replaces Rose and Billups moves over to his natural spot at PG.

  • http://thekobebeef.wordpress.com LDR4

    Maybe Gordon will get more face time in the coming season with his strong performances at the worlds. But since he is a Clipper I doubt that that will be the case.

  • trey

    doesnt matter who starts for them, come crunch time Billups would definately be in, no doubt.

  • http://www.slamonline.com/ The Promise

    Do whatever is best for the team. Billups is a team guy, so he won’t gripe over this.

  • Nick the Quick

    Anyone else notice how Danny G is really struggling in the tourney. He keeps getting torched on offense, has many defensive lapses and even his shot is rarely there. I could say the same about Curry and his turnovers but at least he hustles a lil bit and when open, will knock down shots.

  • drosefan

    Rose isn’t losing his job.

  • http://twitter.com/HarryByrdMan44 LA Huey

    Give him more time but don’t eff with the lineups at this point. And we shouldn’t remove one of our only two bench sparks.

  • Michael

    I dont know if he should start over Billups, But EJ is a beast. I saw him play High school ball in Indianapolis. He has the total package-strength,speed,quickness,explosive,fundamentals and a effortless jumpshot. He will be a one of the Top 20 players in the NBA in a few years. Most NBA fans have not seen him play much because he is a clipper but trust me–Hes the future>> shout out to Naptown

  • T-Money

    The thing that worries me about this team is C-Bills not letting KD take over at the end of games (like vs Brazil).

  • unrel

    don’t let the clippers know how well he’s playing.. maybe he can avoid the curse..

  • Jdubbs

    Have you guys actually seen Billups in the tourney?

    I saw a lot of 3 pointers clang off the rim early in the shot clock. Gordon should get the nod, he’s been incredible.

  • http://slamonline.com nikehead23

    chauncey isn’t being that great a leader , he hardly passes, and jacks up 3′s the whole game

  • http://shinefluid@aol.com CHICAGO SAID IT YUP

    ALL I KNOW IS GORDON PLAYS WELL BUT IN BLOWOUTS. ITS GONNA DEPEND ON WHO COACH K TRUST THE MOST WHEN THINGS GET TIGHT

  • duckas

    true. keep billups over gordon and keep the spark plug on the pine

  • Robb

    I’m sure when the USA team gets to play against true teams Billups will start. Against Tunisia anybody can shine, not to diss Eric, who’s a great player, but Chauncey’s leadership and poise when the game is on the line is irreplaceable.

  • Sarah

    Agree with nikehead23. Honestly Billups hasn’t impressed me much. I have respect for what he’s done in his career and still can do but I don’t think this would be a terrible move.

  • andynorstrom

    danny granger is a consistent 26 ppg scorer with good size for fiba play, why isnt he tearing it up?

  • flash

    i would take chauncey over durant in crunch time. because its a fact that he’ll come through. just ask his nickname

  • xplore

    It is a better idea for the lineup. but billups is the mentor, and example. so, coach’s decision

  • xplore

    Chauncey will win but if Eric wins I would personally quit and practice with Mello and the Nuggets if Melo stays. Eric Is not that good!

  • JTaylor21

    Michael is right, EG is one of the most talented players and the SKY is the limit for him. He just needs to continue to get better and with BGrriff coming back the clipps should at least challenge for a playoff spot. @Flash, you speak nothing but the truth about durant, who has been medicore when it comes to performing in crunch time.

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    I told yall he can no longer live off of six years ago. Billups should not be on this team. What has he done all this tournament. NOTHING. Those who think he will come up clutch are thinking back to 2004-2005 season. This is 2010 and he is nothing but a flash in the pan right now, who has a hero mentality to want to hit big shots, but can’t produce anymore. Coaches are tired of his bad 3 point attempts and he has done NOTHING, I would rather have OJ Mayo in his spot as a big 2 guard. BOOK IT!!!

  • http://www.google.com The Seed

    I’m a hater…

  • tavoris

    ^but you’re speaking the truth.

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    That I’m a hater is an imposter of me. You hating cat, be a man don’t post under The Seed unless you got knowledge. BOOK IT!

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    I wouldn’t go as far as Seed, but I’ve been saying many of those things for a while. Billups has benefited from his time in Detroit, and from the common perception about what he did in Denver upon his arrival.
    Only, if you look closer, you’ll notice that the Nuggets’ record didn’t improve that much, and after the first year where they got weak competition to get to the WCF and then collapsed mentally they then lost in the first round despite having a better team.
    However, I think Gordon is great off the bench, he dominates second teamers for other squads.

  • The Philosopher

    Shout out to Daimon Bailey.

  • http://yahoo.com The Seed

    I’m STILL a hater and I have a kobe bryant poster with a hole where his mouth used to be.

  • bo

    Respect to Gordon, but Chauncey is doing so many things for the team that stats dont show, and regardless who starts it is obvious that him and Lamar are the defacto leaders of the team

  • http://ask.com The Seed

    Billups so overrated dude. BOOOOOOOOK ITTTTTTTT!!!!!!!!!!!

  • tavoris

    bo-what things don’t the stats show? the deplorable defense? the gambling for steals? the early off-target 3′s that make offensive rebounds unlikely?

  • http://www.google.com/news BETCATS

    I never knew people could get worked up over a Billups/Gordon debate. lol

  • JTaylor21

    I love CBillups but EG is playing better at this very moment so it would makes sense for him to start. Team USA playing style fits EG more than Billups because he’s the better driver, athlete and finishes better around the rim. Also LO has NO business starting let alone being the SO CALLED defacto leader.

  • cinquet

    Billups is about controlling tempo. If I’m coach K im keeping gordon as my six man stud. the same way he did with dwade in the olympics. you need that spark off the bench.

  • tavoris

    @cinquet-Billups isn’t controlling tempo tho. He’s jacking up 3′s early. He’s waving Derrick Rose away from the ball. He’s NOT hitting his J (or free throws for that matter). And he’s gambling for steals when he’s in position to get stops. Right now, Gordon should be starting, and Billups should be coming off the bench with Westbrook. That way, his screw ups won’t result in the US having BS first quarters.

  • http://Www.fiba.com Darksaber

    In other news, team USA just added Barkley. Reason? To re-enact the infamous elbowing of an Angolan opponent, plus the subsequent sneer and ignorant interview postgame. Good times.

  • Pingback: SLAM ONLINE | » USA’s Starting Five Remains Unchanged

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