Hedges says that it’s up to the veterans to be leaders and help with any mistakes that may be made by the new players in the line up.
“In the long run it’s great, and it’s what we need,” he explains. “In the short here and now, there are some mistakes that are made. We’ve had some guys that have played for 10, 15, even 20 years so having had them be on the team for so long hasn’t given some guys some opportunites, where now they have them. We have to work with them as veterans.”
As for Hedges himself, he hasn’t played much recently as he’s been recovering from injuries. That being said he feels healthy now and prepared heading into the tournament.
“I’m feeling healthy, and back, and ready to go.” he says. “There was a 2 week stretch where everyone went to England and Germany, so I had to pull out of that one, so I haven’t seen the guys in about three months. It will be fun to get back and play some elite basketball, and it will be a big challenge for us.
The fop four finishers from the Americas Cup will advance to the world championships. Hedges is optimistic that the team will land in that grouping.
“Obviously we want to be in the final and play for the gold medal,” Hedges says. “The ultimate goal is to win that quarter final game. From there it will be about building and getting guys into pressure situations that maybe they haven’t been in on the international stage.”
Hedges and company enter the tournament ranked as the top team in the world. The event will be in Botoga, Columbia, August 4-11.