Goran Dragic has taken on a heavy load for the Phoenix Suns this season — playing 34.7 minutes a night he has had to become the focal point of the team’s offense due to injuries around him. Dragic is averaging a career high 20.3 points a night, plus is dishing out 6 assists, and he had the highest usage percentage of his career at 24.6.
He’s understandably a little worn down.
He’s also a key part of the national team for Slovenia, which qualified for the FIBA World Cup this summer in Spain. Only the Olympics rivals the importance of this tournament.
But after his long season, Dragic may skip the summer trip to Spain and rest, he told Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic.
“Sometimes, it is too many games,” Dragic said. “I still have to sit down with my national team and talk with them about making a decision if I’m going to play or not. I’m thinking more toward not playing and trying to get my body some rest to be fresher for the next season.
“That is hard because, back home, all the people judge you that you have so much money and you’re a star and now you don’t want to play for the national team. That bothers me a little bit but those people don’t know how the season goes, how many games it is and being in a different hotel every night. I’m more on the plane than in my car.”
There are Americans taking the summer off as well — LeBron James being the biggest name. However, because the United States can roll out Kevin Durant and Kevin Love and a host of other elite players nobody really gets up in arms about it.
Slovenia isn’t quite so deep. They can roll out Beno Udrih (he hasn’t played for the Slovenian national team since 2006) and guys now out of the NBA such as Bostian Nachbar, but they don’t have the depth to make up for missing stars. They have Goran’s brother Zoran Dragic at the three, but after Goran at the point they often play Jaka Lakovic.
Which is to say Goran may get a lot of pressure back home and really be stuck between the “club or country” debate. Right now, he’s leaning club in that argument, but we will see.