While one of his current teammates, a notable former teammate, and some possible future ones are among the dozen players that make up the 2021 U.S. Men’s National Basketball team, Golden State Warriors superstar Stephen Curry is notably absent this summer.
The 33-year-old point guard announced his decision in June, joining the likes of LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Donovan Mitchell on the sidelines, all of whom suffered injuries during the 2021 NBA Playoffs. On Thursday, as he prepares to take part in this weekend’s American Century Championship golf tournament, Curry went into some detail as to why he chose to skip out on the Tokyo Olympics.
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It was a hard decision. Coming off of this season and the condensed schedule, the protocols and obviously where I’m at in my career, I do value the offseason, and I’m working back on the court, but to try to go and play and there’s just a lot that could happen. I respect every single guy that goes and plays that’s out there in Vegas and I wish them all the success and a gold medal to show for it.
It just wasn’t right for me. And I’m very confident in that decision. No regrets at all. Obviously being here I’m playing golf, having fun with my family. And that’s a personal thing
Although Curry won’t be competing for the gold, there will still be a heavy dose of Warriors’ flavor in the mix.
Draymond Green, Steve Kerr Looking to Recruit Future Warriors?
Warriors head coach Steve Kerr will headline a group of assistants that will work under the guise of San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich for the men’s team, while Draymond Green is back for another go-around. Additionally, Curry and Green’s former teammate, Kevin Durant, will represent his country in the Olympics again, but this will be the first time since his messy breakup with the organization.
Of the other 10 players suiting up for the red, white and blue, there are numerous guys who the Dubs have been linked to in both free agency and in trade rumors. Among them are Bradley Beal of the Washington Wizards, Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers and Kevin Love of the Cleveland Cavaliers. With practice having started on Tuesday and the Olympics scheduled to run through August 8, it’ll be over a month of spending nearly 24 hours a day together and there will surely be plenty of recruiting opportunities for Green and Kerr.
Steph Taking Injury-Risk Into Account With Decision
Although the Phoenix Suns being just two wins away from their first NBA title is an incredible story, the most dominant plot line throughout the postseason has been the seemingly never-ending string of injuries to superstars. While he’s not considered a star player, Dario Šarić went down with a torn ACL in Game One, so even the Suns couldn’t escape the injury bug in their big summer run.
LeBron, AD, Donovan Mitchell, and Šarić are just the beginning of a very lengthy list of players to succumb to injuries over the last couple of months, and Curry explained that those happenings also impacted his decision to sit out the Tokyo Olympics.
You take everything into account. I take how I’m feeling physically, mentally, what’s happening around the league, all those things, it’s not one specific reason or a part of it, but just knowing at the end of the day do I want to play or not? And the answer was no at the end of the day. And getting ready for next season, relatively quick turnaround is important to me and I have a plan of how to do that and get ready for when training camp starts.
Team USA is set to play seven exhibition games in Las Vegas before heading across to the other side of the world later in July.
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