The new Los Angeles Lakers superstar Anthony Davis decided not to take part of the USA Basketball training camp and will miss the upcoming FIBA World Cup in China, according to the sources close to ESPN.
Still, Davis would consider playing for the USA national team in the 2020 Olympics, as reported by ESPN’s Dave McMenamin and Ramona Shelburne. Right now, though, he wants to focus on preparing for the next NBA campaign, his first with the Los Angeles Lakers.
The former New Orleans Pelicans All-Star was a member of the 2012 USA Olympic team and also of the national team that competed in the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup. However, Davis now believes that his NBA career must be in the first place, and he’s eager to help the Lakers to compete for the NBA championship while developing a strong chemistry with LeBron James and the rest of the squad.
Following a blockbuster trade between the New Orleans Pelicans and Los Angeles Lakers that saw Davis arriving in LA for Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, and Josh Hart along with draft picks, Davis was officially introduced as a new Laker on Saturday.
Davis’ withdrawal will open a slot for a center or power forward in Gregg Popovich’s USA national team. Zion Williamson, the No. 1 pick overall in the 2019 NBA Draft, or Detroit Pistons star Blake Griffin could move into the roster instead. The FIBA World Cup in China is starting on the last day of August, so we will know more in the coming weeks after the USA Basketball training camp is over.
The training camp will take place in early August in Las Vegas, and now Popovich has 19 players at his disposal before he chooses 12 which will travel to China. Andre Drummond of the Detroit Pistons, Kevin Love of the Cleveland Cavaliers, Myles Turner of the Indiana Pacers, Paul Millsap of the Denver Nuggets, and Brook Lopez of the Milwaukee Bucks are among the big guys who are invited.