Weeks ago, Russell Westbrook announced his withdrawal from the 2014 FIBA basketball world cup, and today, Kevin Love decided to skip the event as well.
According to a press release on USA basketball's official website, Timberwolves power forward Kevin Love will not contribute in the following event.
Jerry Colangelo, USA basketball national team managing director stated:
"The fact is we can only look to the players that we have available," Colangelo said in a statement. "Our job is to get the job done with our very, very deep roster, and we're anxious to get things started."
Kevin Love was considered to be one of the main important key players on the roster for the upcoming international event, but due to some conditions, Love is forced to opt out from the event. Given that he is the center of a number of trade proposals, his health in the NBA likely weighs heavily. This idea was confirmed by Jon Krawcznyski , who wrote:
"USA Basketball said in a statement that Love withdrew from the national team this summer because of his "current status." Love is seeking a trade from Minnesota, and an injury during next month's World Cup – or preparations for it – could impact negotiations."
Kevin Love's withdrawal from Team USA obviously has a negative impact on the team; especially that Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin will not participate as well.
As as been tweeted, Clippers indeed announce Blake Griffin will not play for USA Basketball at FIBA World Cup in Spain this summer.— Jeff Zillgitt (@JeffZillgitt) July 24, 2014
Team USA now will have to rely on Anthony Davis, and DeMarcus Cousins. No doubt overall, Team USA is filled with talent, but if USA plays Spain in the finals, they are going to be in need for big men, especially that the Spanish team involves players with huge size and great abilities down the rim.
Does Kevin Love withdrawal affects Kevin Durant?
The most probable line up for Team USA :
PG: Chris Paul
SG: James Harden
SF: Kevin Durant
PF: Anthony Davis
C: DeMarcus Cousins
Kevin Durant responsibility likely increases, and he is going to face a lot of pressure in terms of offense since Kevin Love is out. He still has Chris Paul along side him, but there is suddenly a dearth of perimeter shooting on the team. IfJames Harden is inconsistent, then this will keep Kevin Durant under a lot of pressure offensively. However, if the coach decides to be more creative, Kevin Durant might be forced to play as a power forward.