Damian Lillard and Draymond Green reportedly plan to represent the USA in the Tokyo Olympics. Kawhi Leonard may join them, but that could also hinge on how deep a playoff run the Clippers make.
Now add the Celtics’ Jayson Tatum and the Wizards’ Bradley Beal to the list for the Olympics, reportedly.
Tatum is in for Tokyo Olympics, reports Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports. That would bring an athletic two-way wing player to the roster, an All-Star player who averaged 26.4 points, 7.4 rebounds, and 4.3 assists for the Celtics this season.
Beal may join him — and Tatum may not be a total lock yet — reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
Sources: Among the invitations USA Basketball has made for inclusion on the 12-man Olympic roster, there’s optimism that Coach Gregg Popovich will get commitments from Bradley Beal and Jayson Tatum.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 16, 2021
So far, no word yet on Stephen Curry, a player who has said in the past he wants a gold medal to add to his resume. LeBron James and Anthony Davis of the Lakers, both coming off an injury-filled season after having almost no offseason after winning a title in the bubble, have declined to play (both have Olympic golds from past games). Jimmy Butler also will not play in Tokyo after a season where he battled injuries, reports the Miami Herald.
The Spurs’ Greg Popovich will coach Team USA, which is the three-time defending Olympic gold medalists. It seems NBA stars are lining up to play in Tokyo, something that did not happen for Popovich at the FIBA World Cup in 2019, where the USA finished seventh — still good enough to automatically qualify for the Tokyo Olympic Games.
USA Basketball will open its training camp in Las Vegas on July 6. The USA will be joined by teams from Australia, Nigeria, Argentina, and Spain in kind of a training “bubble” in Vegas. The teams will play each other in exhibitions before heading to Tokyo.
The Olympic games begin July 23 and can be seen here on NBC, with streaming of nearly every event over at NBCOlympics.com.