CLEVELAND, Ohio – LeBron James informed USA Basketball that he would not participate in the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in August, citing the glut of court time he’s logged through six consecutive trips to the Finals.
James’ agent Rich Paul informed Team USA managing director Jerry Colangelo Thursday of James’ decision.
“I could use the rest,” James told cleveland.com.
James’ decision could signal the end of his prolific Olympic career. He’s 31 and has already won two gold medals (in 2012 and 2008) and a bronze (2004) in three Olympics with Team USA, as well as a bronze in the 2006 FIBA World Championships.
A source close to James said a desire to rest his body from the last championship run and prepare for what he hopes is a second one for the Cavs is his sole reason for not playing for Team USA. Items such as the Zika virus, political unrest in Brazil, or the fact that James had already played basketball in Rio — when the Cavs traveled there in October, 2014 for an exhibition game — were not factors.
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