Frazier shows complete game at Team USA tryout
Published: Saturday, June 22, 2013 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, June 21, 2013 at 9:21 p.m.
Florida guard Michael Frazier II showed more than his shooting ability during Team USA 19-under tryouts.
That's what convinced the Team USA coaching staff, led by UF coach Billy Donovan, to carry Frazier on the final roster.
Frazier will more than likely serve the role as shooter off the bench when Team USA opens play at the FIBA 19-under World Championships on Thursday in Prague, Czech Republic. But he thinks he can help the team in other areas.
“I tried to show them different areas of my game, like passing, rebounding, being intense on defense, talking, being a leader, things like that,” Frazier said. “I wouldn't have been invited (to tryouts) if I couldn't shoot the ball, so I think they all knew that. I tried to show different parts of my game.”
Frazier shot 46.9 percent from 3-point range as a freshman (52-111) and his ability to bust zone defenses should prove valuable in facing international competition.
“Playing-wise it's going to be a different game,” Frazier said. “It's more physical. Shooting is a big part of the game over there so we're going to have to be able to stretch the floor but also have to use our strengths like our athleticism and our quickness and length and things like that.”
It won't be Frazier's first trip overseas. As a high school senior, the 6-foot-4 Tampa native played in China with Montverde Academy. But it will be the first time Frazier will be in uniform with Team USA colors.
“I'm very honored to be able to represent my country,” Frazier said.
Frazier said he's building chemistry with his current teammates, which include Oklahoma State All-American guard Marcus Smart and Tennessee center Jarnell Stokes.
“It's really fun playing with these guys,” Frazier said. “They all know how to play the game, they're great players. I think we gel good together on the court. I think it's just a really fun experience for all of us and we're going to try to go overseas and win the gold.”
Frazier said Donovan is coaching Team USA similar to how he coaches Florida.
“We're pressing a lot, running a lot of the same offense,” Frazier said. “A lot of the same movement, and we're just trying to impose our style of play which is getting up and down the court.”