Team USA isn’t the only FIBA World Cup nation dealing with last-minute withdrawals. Sixers forward Jonah Bolden has informed the Australian squad that he won’t be participating in the tournament, which starts in 13 days, according to Olgun Uluc of Fox Sports Australia. He cited “personal reasons” for the decision.
Bolden looked good in exhibition play, posting 12 points and five rebounds in Saturday’s win over Canada. His place could be taken by Deng Adel, who signed an Exhibit 10 contract with the Nets last month, or Brock Motum, according to Uluc. The Australians are already playing without Ben Simmons, Thon Maker, Ryan Broekhoff and Dante Exum.
“My first thought is always with the player in these situations — having to withdraw from the national team is tough for anyone,” Boomers head coach Andrej Lemanis said. “From a team perspective, the timing is sub-optimal, but again, we are very fortunate to have the depth of talent we have in this country available to take up this opportunity. Whilst it can feel like we need to make a quick decision, the most important thing is to bring in the player that best complements the other skill sets we have on the team.”
There’s more World Cup news to pass along:
- Germany has cut Wizards center Moritz Wagner, relays Dario Skerletic of Sportando. The Germans, whose preliminary roster includes Maxi Kleber, Dennis Schroder, Daniel Theis and Isaac Bonga, still have to get rid of one more player before the tournament begins. Wagner was sent to Washington last month as part of the Anthony Davis trade.
- France trimmed Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot from its World Cup squad, according to Emiliano Carchia of Sportando. The free agent forward played for the Thunder and Bulls last season.
- Gregg Popovich only has one cut to make from Team USA, but he expects it to be very difficult, writes Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press. The Americans headed to Australia yesterday for a pair of exhibition games with 13 players still on their roster. The final decision is expected to come around August 27. “When you cut people from your regular NBA team, it’s difficult,” Popovich said. “We’re going to have to do that. And it’s going to be even more so. I’m dreading having to do that. But it’s got to get done.”