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2014 FIBA World Cup: Luis Scola represents Argentina well in international play

The Pacers veteran forward earned his way to the NBA in part through his illustrious career in international play for the powerhouse Argentina national team.

Streeter Lecka

Pacers forward Luis Scola will dial up the intensity this weekend when Argentina opens FIBA World Cup play on Saturday against Puerto Rico in Sevilla, Spain.

Could it be his last go around playing for his home country?

Scola has a wealth of international basketball experience dating back to 1995 when he won a gold medal as a member of Argentina's junior national team in the South American Cadet Championship. He was just 15-years-old at the time but has been playing for Argentina in some capacity ever since.

Now as a 34-year-old veteran for the Argentina national team, Scola hopes to help lead a team ranked among the top five international teams through a transition period as several other stars continue aging, as well. Manu Ginobili will not be able to play as he rests a stress fracture in his leg after helping the Spurs when the NBA championship. At 37, Ginobili now considers his career with Argentina over.

Scola may draw the same conclusion after the FIBA World Cup this year, although if he's healthy, I imagine the 2016 Olympics in Rio would remain a goal for his farewell to international play. Additional veteran help on the Argentinian team is provided by Andres Nocioni (34) and Pablo Prigioni (37).

The key for Argentina is getting help from the next generation of players, with 23-year-old point guard Facundo Campazzo and shooting guard Selem Safar taking on a lead role in the backcourt.

Argentina appears to be the favorite in Pool B which includes Puerto Rico, Croatia (with new Pacers forward Damjan Rudez), Greece, Senegal and Philippines.