Toronto Raptors guard Kyle Lowry, who has been working to recover from right thumb surgery, has withdrawn from participation with the U.S. Men’s National Team.
Lowry explained his decision on Instagram, writing: ” … I was hoping to be cleared and ready for the tournament, but I was not cleared for full basketball activities. I was hoping to be available in time to help my country in their quest for the gold this upcoming tournament. I love playing for USAB but I have to sit this one out and support the team from home. At the end of the day, I believe the men that are playing will be great and will win the gold for our country … GO USAB!!”
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reports Lowry has not been cleared to resume playing after having surgery on his right thumb in July. He went to USA Basketball training camp despite a lingering notion he would not be able to play. He played on the U.S. team that won gold in 2016 at the Olympics and remains a hopeful for the 2020 Olympic team, Wojnarowski reports.
In the 2016 Olympics, Lowry played in eight games, averaging 5 points, 3.3 rebounds and 3.8 assists. He has been a star for the Raptors over the last seven seasons, earning All-Star appearances in five straight seasons. He averaged 14.2 ppg, 4.8 rpg and 8.7 apg last season and then averaged 15 ppg, 4.9 rpg and 6.6 apg as the Raptors won the NBA championship.
Following USA Basketball’s first scrimmage in Las Vegas last weekend, Sacramento Kings big man Marvin Bagley III also withdrew from the team to prepare for the upcoming NBA season. Overall, it has been a chaotic lead up to the FIBA World Cup for Team USA as a parade of players have dropped out of participating for a variety of reasons — from injury to offseason workload and more.
Team USA will start the next leg of its training camp in Los Angeles on Tuesday. The players who will be vying for the 12-man roster are: Harrison Barnes, Jaylen Brown, De’Aaron Fox, Joe Harris, Kyle Kuzma, Brook Lopez, Khris Middleton, Donovan Mitchell, Mason Plumlee, Marcus Smart, Jayson Tatum, PJ Tucker, Myles Turner, Kemba Walker and Derrick White.