The better the players around him, the better Andre Iguodala seems to fit. That was clearly the case Saturday night as the 76ers' forward/guard contributed 17 points, 6 rebounds and 5 assists in the White squad's 114-96 victory over the Blue team in the USA Basketball Showcase game in Las Vegas.
The 19 players on the overall USA roster are competing for 12 spots on the U.S. National Team that will participate in the World Championships Aug. 28-Sept. 12 in Turkey. National Team head coach Mike Krzyzewski and his staff will cut to probably 15 for a second camp next month in New York.
Delaware county native Tyreke Evans of the Saqcramento Kings appears to be an obvious cut because he has been out with a sprained ankle. But Iguodala appears to be close to earning a spot.
''I think Andre has had a great week; I think any of these guys would tell you that he's an easy guy to play with,''Krzyzewski said. ''He doesn't need the ball. I told him right after the ball game, out on the court, that he was beautifully efficient. I'm not sure anyone has ever called him beautiful before; I know no one has ever called me beautiful.
''I was actually looking for a return of him saying 'Well, coach, you look beautiful, too.' Maybe as we get to know each other more, he'll do that. Andre, yeah, he can defend. You need guys out there who don't have to touch the ball long. He'll be one one of the key guys for our basketball team.''
Iguodala said ''I've been working hard all summer. I've been getting ready for this. This will also help me for the regular season with Philly, so I'm really excited.''
Sixers coach Doug Collins was in Las Vegas to watch the team practices and the game.
''(Iguodala) has been terrific,'' Collins said in a text message before the game. ''He is in a great place mentally.''
Oklahoma City's Kevin Durant led the White team with 28 points, shooting 10-for-17 from the floor. Memphis' Rudy Gay had 23 points for the Blue, shooting 7-for-11.
Iguodala knocked down 5 of his 6 shots, including all 3 of his three-point attempts. He committed just 2 fouls and 2 turnovers in 23:38.
''I just wanted to have fun tonight,'' he said. ''There were a few things that I wanted to accomplish during the game; play unselfish basketball, take care of the ball and play hard on defense, and I think I did that. I also wanted to create some pressure on defense so it would rub off on other guys and get everybody in to it.''