Russell Westbrook and James Harden withdraw from Team USA

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away... Russell Westbrook and James Harden were teammates. Photo Courtesy: Bryan Horowitz
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away… Russell Westbrook (on left) and James Harden (on right) were Thunder teammates. Photo Courtesy: Bryan Horowitz

By Alex Al-Kazzaz

Guards Russell Westbrook and James Harden announced that they will not be playing for Team USA in this year’s Summer Olympic Games in Rio.

Westbrook and Harden aren’t the only ones who have withdrawn from the team. Stephen Curry, LaMarcus Aldridge, and Chris Paul also withdrew from the roster earlier this year.

The reasons for these withdrawals is not due to the major concerns of the Zika virus, but just to deal with some injuries.

Nonetheless, I think Team USA will be all right. It’s very understandable that these players would like to rest and heal up to be prepared for the next NBA season. Withdrawing from the opportunity to represent the USA in the Olympic Games is a very tough decision to make.

James Harden explained that this was a decision that he did not take lightly and he hopes that he will earn another opportunity to represent his country again. And I am sure he will.

Russell Westbrook also expressed his hopes of again representing the USA in the Olympic Games.

Westbrook’s teammate Kevin Durant says he intends on playing for the USA along with LeBron James, DaMarcus Cousins, and many other NBA talents. So I think Team USA will be all right. They’re the two-time defending Olympic Gold winning team in the past two games. They’ve got the experience and the momentum. Most importantly, they know what it takes to get the job done.

Team USA will announce the final roster after the NBA Finals.

Training Camp will begin in mid-July and the Rio Games will begin August 5.