Wembanyama, Gobert headline stacked French squad for Paris Olympics

Wembanyama, Gobert headline stacked French squad for Paris Olympics

As host, the French Men’s National Basketball Team didn’t have to go through the qualification process for the 2024 Paris Olympics, but that doesn’t mean they are not a threat — France has a legitimate chance to medal (they took silver in Tokyo).

France unveiled a 19-man preliminary roster for the Paris 2024 Olympics, and it is stacked.

At the top of the list is NBA Rookie of the Year Victor Wembanyama. The NBA Rookie of the Year averaged 21.4 points and 10.6 rebounds a game, but he was more impactful on the defensive end of the court, where he averaged 3.6 blocks a night. Wembanyama finished second in Defensive Player of the Year voting, which is almost unheard of for a rookie.

Rudy Gobert, who beat Wembanyama out for DPOY, is also on the French team. Together, they form a defensive backline that will challenge every opponent.

“The key to building the team will be establishing an uncompromising defense,” France coach Vincent Collet said at a news conference, via the Associated Press. We have profiles that excel in this area.”

A number of other NBA players are on the French roster including Nicolas Batum, Evan Fournier, Bilal Coulibaly, Ousmane Dieng and Killian Hayes.

France has drawn into Group B in the Olympics with Germany (which won last summer’s FIBA World Cup), Japan and one team that advances out of the upcoming qualifying tournaments later this summer.

This is going to be a loaded international tournament with NBA players filling out a lot of the roster spots. The USA — led by Kevin Durant, LeBron James, Joel Embiid and Stephen Curry — are the gold medal favorites, but will be pushed by Serbia (Nikola Jokic), Canada (Shai Gilgeous-Alexander), Germany and others. Including France.

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