Colangelo: Durant 'made it very clear' departure wasn't because of George
Kevin Durant doesn't want people to think he left Team USA because of Paul George's injury.
Kevin Durant has left Team USA, and, given that after Paul George's injury there was talk about the NBA's involvement with FIBA competitions, speculation started immediately that the two events were connected. Durant, however, told USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo that this is not the case, via Yahoo Sports' Marc Spears:
USA's Jerry Colangelo said Kevin Durant “made it very clear” his departure had nothing to do with Paul George breaking his leg.— Marc J. Spears (@SpearsNBAYahoo) August 8, 2014
USA Basketball's Jerry Colangelo says Durant told him his departure had nothing to do with Paul George's injury & he just feels "wiped out."— Marc J. Spears (@SpearsNBAYahoo) August 8, 2014
Colangelo added that he wasn't totally surprised by Durant's decision because last week he didn't seem like himself during training camp. He also said, in talking to most of the remaining 15 players, no one else wants to back out.
Durant played more minutes than anyone else in the NBA last season, and he had to shoulder an even larger load than usual for the Oklahoma City Thunder for significant stretches when Russell Westbrook was injured. The Thunder went to the conference finals, which they've done three times in four years, and it's understandable that he's worn down. Let's just take the MVP at his word here.
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