Since the U.S. flamed out of the FIBA World Cup two weeks ago, a host of NBA superstars declared some level of intent to play for the U.S. Olympic team next year: Stephen Curry, James Harden, Russell Westbrook and Anthony Davis to name the most high profile.
LeBron James stopped short of saying he planned to be in Tokyo in July. He was asked about it Friday.
“Team USA? Um … I don’t know,” James said. “See how I can do throughout this season. I will address that at some point, hopefully have an opportunity to have a conversation with Coach [Gregg Popovich].”
While James was named to a preliminary 35-man national team player pool in April, along with every other top American, he hasn’t publicly committed to accepting one of the 12 roster spots, should he be offered one.
James, who turns 35 on Dec. 30, will be older come the Tokyo Opening Ceremony than all but one previous U.S. Olympic men’s basketball player (Larry Bird). He announced six weeks before the Rio Games that he would skip that tournament rather than play at the Games for a fourth straight time.
But James could be swayed with Popovich taking over for Mike Krzyzewski this Olympic cycle. He has called Popovich the greatest coach in the league and said that the Spurs’ leader’s hiring “factors a lot” into his decision on Tokyo 2020.
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