LaMarcus Aldridge withdraws from consideration for the 2016 Olympic Games

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On the same day that the NBA's Most Valuable Player withdrew from consideration for the United States of America's Olympic Basketball team for Rio 2016, a fellow All-Star has followed suit. 

Stephen Curry cited his recent knee and ankle injuries for his decision to skip the summer event, and San Antonio Spurs big man LaMarcus Aldridge has also declared himself unavailable due to a finger issue sustained late in the 2015-16 campaign. 

The former Portland Trail Blazer was always unlikely to make the 12-man roster for the competition in Brazil and his withdrawal will only make the final decision that little bit easier for Mike Krzyzewski.

Despite enjoying a successful career with the Spurs and Blazers, the 30-year-old has never represented his nation at an international tournament having withdrawn on numerous occasions in the past. 

He was given a chance to stake his claim when the original preliminary squad was announced, however, once again, he will not don the red, white and blue. 

San Antonio confirmed his decision on Monday with general manager RC Buford saying the franchise "always support a player's decision when it comes to participation with his national team."

Production wise, the five-time All-Star endured one of his worst showings during his first year with the Spurs. However, it seemed the pieces were finally beginning to fall into place towards the end of the regular season.

Alongside Kawhi Leonard, he was seen as a leader of the organisation. Although, the changing of the guard from Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili to the younger duo hit a snag as they were eliminated in the Western Conference playoff semi-finals by the Oklahoma City Thunder in six games, having broken franchises records on the way to a 67-15 finish before the postseason. 

The forward averaged 18 points - shooting 51.3 percent from the field - and 8.5 rebounds through the regular season before upping his scoring output to 21.9 per game in the playoffs during his inaugural year at the AT&T Center. 


As for the USA, the withdrawal of Aldridge and Curry will do little to change their position as odds-on favourites. Krzyzewski still has 25 names to choose from as he deliberates of his final 12 for the event in Rio de Janeiro. 

Draymond Green, Harrison Barnes, Paul George, Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Durant and Kevin Love are just some of the names amongst an extremely talented bunch of players fighting for the limited number of forward slots on the roster. 

Despite the two aforementioned drop outs, the likes of Anthony and Green are still supremely driven to win a gold medal in the summer. Melo is longing for the winning feeling while Green admitted it is something he would love to do. There will be many others keen to add to their resume in August.

San Antonio Spurs
Southwest Division
Western Conference
Kawhi Leonard
LaMarcus Aldridge

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