2:22pm: Paul won’t play for Team USA after all, according to Wojnarowski, who reports (via Twitter) that the Suns point guard has declined an invitation to join the squad for the Tokyo games.
11:39am: USA Basketball continues to secure commitments for the Tokyo Olympics, according to reports from Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN and Shams Charania of The Athletic.
Bucks guard/forward Khris Middleton and Cavaliers power forward Kevin Love have committed to play for Team USA in Tokyo, their agents at Excel Basketball tell Wojnarowski. Meanwhile, sources inform Charania that Suns point guard Chris Paul plans to commit to the team as well.
The new series of additions means Team USA’s Olympic roster is now up to 11 tentative commitments, as follows:
- Guards: Damian Lillard, Bradley Beal, James Harden, Devin Booker, Paul
- Forwards: Kevin Durant, Jayson Tatum, Middleton
- Bigs: Bam Adebayo, Draymond Green, Love
Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell turned down an invite from USA Basketball, opting to use the offseason for recovery and rehab following his right ankle injury, tweets Wojnarowski. After a few weeks of deliberation, Warriors star Stephen Curry has also decided not to represent Team USA in Tokyo, Charania notes (via Twitter). So neither Mitchell nor Curry will fill the 12th and final spot on the squad.
That 12th spot may be reserved for Paul George, according to Joe Vardon of The Athletic. Before CP3’s commitment was reported, Vardon wrote that the Suns guard and the Clippers forward would be the favorites to get spots on Team USA if they’re willing to play.
Of course, the Suns and Clippers remain alive in the postseason, and at least one of them will be playing in the NBA Finals until at least mid-July. As Vardon relays, Team USA managing director Jerry Colangelo said that Booker intends to play in Tokyo even if the Suns make it to the Finals and have to play a seven-game series. It’s unclear if Paul – and George, if he commits – will take a similar position.