Why LeBron James, Stephen Curry and different NBA stars skipped the 2021 Olympics
Ball is life, nevertheless it’s not Olympics.
The USA males’s basketball crew has had some points in latest weeks. After a couple of poor showings in exhibition video games, the crew was compelled to search out replacements for Kevin Love and Bradley Beal on the fly, with some … attention-grabbing replacements named.
However the present should go on — and it is occurring with out a few of its greatest stars.
Earlier than the roster was chosen, a number of of the Affiliation’s greatest names withdrew from consideration for the nationwide crew for various causes, however largely health-related; Which means, the world will not get to see LeBron James, Stephen Curry, James Harden and others within the world event.
With one other quick NBA offseason for gamers and a bevy of accidents, loads of gamers withdrew from consideration for the 2021 Olympic squad.
MORE: Full USA basketball roster for 2021 Olympics
After the Lakers have been ousted within the first spherical of the NBA playoffs, LeBron James used his post-series press convention to say he was sitting out of the 2021 Olympics.
James, 37, handled an ankle harm that saved him out a month of the common season, re-aggravating the harm over the past sport of the common season. The famous person determined it greatest to relaxation his physique and heal up for the 2021-22 season.
“Nah, I believe I am gonna play for the Tune Squad this summer season as a substitute of the Olympics,” James mentioned.
Curry, like James, handled accidents all through his profession. In 2021, he missed time on account of a fractured tailbone, however nonetheless performed in 63 of a attainable 72 video games. Nonetheless, the 33-year-old is taking the summer season off to proceed to heal his physique.
In July, Curry revealed he was at peace with the choice to overlook out on the Olympics regardless of the 2021 crew one in all his final actual pictures at making an Olympic basketball crew:
“No regrets in any respect. Clearly being right here, enjoying golf, having enjoyable with my household — that is a private factor. However there’s at all times that itch to play and play on the largest stage, just like the Olympics. But it surely simply wasn’t the suitable factor for me and the suitable time,” Curry mentioned.
Additionally stepping except for the Olympic crew this yr is Nets guard James Harden. Harden was sidelined with a hamstring harm within the playoffs, returning late in Brooklyn’s collection in opposition to the Bucks, although he clearly wasn’t 100%.
Group USA managing director Jerry Colangelo instructed ESPN’s Brian Windhorst than Harden’s hamstring and getting wholesome are his priorities this summer season:
The Suns guard’s full consideration was on the NBA Finals, his first alternative to seize a Larry O’Brien trophy in his profession.
Due to the tip of the NBA Finals and the beginning of the 2021 Olympics leaves no actual break for the 36-year-old Paul, the 2008 and 2012 gold-medal winner on Group USA withdrew his identify from consideration for the squad.
Davis had an injury-riddled 2020-21 season: He missed time with Achilles/calf accidents, limiting him to only 36 video games of the 72 regular-season contests this previous season.
Then, Davis handled a groin harm that saved him from full-strength within the Lakers’ temporary playoff run. Whereas the star ahead hasn’t commented on on why he is not enjoying, it is wholly anticipated he is making an attempt to get wholesome for the upcoming NBA season.
The Nets guard injured his ankle in Brooklyn’s playoff matchup vs. the Bucks after stepping on Giannis Antetokounmpo’s foot. Irving would miss the rest of the playoffs with the harm, and subsequently pull his identify from consideration for the Olympic squad.