Team USA ‘Cheapest’ in History

The Wall Street Journal reports that Team USA might be cheaping out with its player selection. Most likely, though, the relatively low salaries are a byproduct of the high number of rookie contracts: “The U.S. is paring down its roster for the FIBA world basketball championships—which start this month—and the folks in charge have made it clear they’re focusing on more than just star power and high scoring averages. But come on, nobody said the team had to be cheap. The average 2009-10 NBA salary for the 15 players now on the roster is about $5.8 million, just 30% above the average annual salary of all NBA players. There’s never been a gap that small in the eight other major international events that featured NBA stars. The next-cheapest team was in 2002, when the average salary was 56% above the league average. That team came in sixth place.”