Las Vegas • Two years ago, while participating in the LeBron James Skills Camp for college players, Trey Burke observed Team USA’s training camp in advance of the Olympics.
This week, he’s on the court with the players who will compete in the FIBA Basketball World Cup in Spain in September.
Burke is not one of those players, but he’s competing against them as part of their preparation. He’s a member of the Select Team that formerly included Jazz teammate Gordon Hayward, who’s now a Team USA hopeful.
That means Burke is playing against All-Star point guards such as Chicago’s Derrick Rose, Portland’s Damian Lillard and Cleveland’s Kyrie Irving. And this is no ordinary practice setting, because those guys are trying to make Team USA’s roster.
"The amount of [defensive] pressure on the ball is at an all-time high right now," Burke marveled after the first session of camp Monday.
So he’s learning to change speeds and set up an offense against that level of defense. "I just want to get better," Burke said. "It’s an honor to be out there with these guys, to get the opportunity to push them as they get ready to go overseas and compete. … It’s something that I’m always going to remember, and I’m going to take a lot from this week."
Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.