Parker’s decision leaves France shorthanded, but the French are also losing lots of depth in the frontcourt.
Neither Pelicans center Alexis Ajinca nor Wizards big Kevin Seraphin will participate, either.
Alexis Ajinca announcing shortly before the start of the preparations for the FIBA Basketball World Cup that he will remain with his pregnant wife, who is due to give birth during the tournament, instead of playing this summer,
On Thursday, France also announced that big man Kevin Seraphin was not being released for the World Cup by his NBA team, the Washington Wizards.
Seraphin has not fully recovered from arthroscopy surgery on his knee.
I wouldn’t be surprised if Seraphin wanted to pass, anyway. By accepting Washington’s qualifying offer, he’ll become an unrestricted free agent after this season. With Trevor Booker headed to the Jazz, Seraphin will have a bigger chance to prove himself and earn a larger multi-year contract.
Why risk that for what amount to exhibition games, especially when you’re already injured?
I certainly wouldn’t begrudge Seraphin for wanting to represent his country regardless of what’s reasonable, but logic dictates he take it easy this summer.
With Ajinca and Seraphin sitting out, Pacers backup center Ian Mahinmi gets his chance. He tweeted (via Google translate):
Very happy to announce that I will make my return to Team France! Looking forward to seeing the guys and don the blue shirt!
It’s pretty astounding France has produced so many NBA centers that the loss of two doesn’t cripple its World Cup chances.