FIBA pushes back Olympic qualifying to next June/July, other championships back a year

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The United States is in.

When the opening ceremony for the Tokyo Olympics takes place on July 23, 2021, USA Basketball will have a team there. Who will be on that team — and if NBA players will be able to participate — remains up in the air, but the Americans have qualified.

Other traditionally powerful international basketball teams — Serbia, Brazil, Czech Republic, China — have not and will need to go through a qualifying tournament to get one of the final four spots available for the Tokyo Games.

FIBA announced Thursday the Olympic qualifying tournaments will be played between June 22 and July 4, 2021 (exact dates still need approval).

It’s unknown if NBA players from those countries — Nikola Jokic helps make Serbia a medal threat — will be able to participate. Just as it’s unknown if NBA players will be able to participate in the Olympics. If the NBA finishes off this season in August or September, then pushes back the start of the 2020-21 season, the league may still be playing on at the time of the Olympics, keeping some or all of the players out of the mix.

At this point, nobody knows what the next NBA season will look like.

With the Olympics taking place in 2021, it forced FIBA to push back EuroBasket 2021 and the AmeriCup 2021 to September 1-18, 2022.