Basketball: Simmons opts out of World Cup in blow for Australia

MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Australia’s hopes of saying a maiden basketball Global Cup were dealt a blow, with Ben Simmons opting out of the event to concentrate on his NBA arrangements.

FILE PHOTO: Apr 6, 2019; Chicago, IL, USA; Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons (25) makes a cross in opposition to Chicago Bulls ahead JaKarr Sampson (41) right through the second one part on the United Middle. Necessary Credit score: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports activities/Report Picture

Simmons, who showed a profitable contract extension with the Philadelphia 76ers on Tuesday, mentioned he had made the “tricky” determination to skip the Aug. 31-Sept. 15 event in China after consulting his illustration.

“I’m truly fascinated about the skill we’ve got at the Boomers squad, particularly shifting nearer to 2020 the place I will be able to be commemorated and humbled to constitute my nation at the international’s greatest wearing level on the Olympics in Tokyo,” the 22-year-old mentioned in a commentary.

“In the long run, we determined it used to be best possible that I take advantage of the time in September to go back to Philadelphia to acquaint myself with my new group pals and get ready for the approaching NBA season.”

Melbourne local Simmons’s commentary got here hours after Philadelphia showed he had signed via to the 2024/25 season, a deal media reported at $170 million, the perfect ever for an Australian athlete.

Decided on with the number 1 general pick out within the 2016 NBA Draft, the guard-forward stepped forward in issues (16.nine), rebounds (eight.eight) and assists (7.7) to earn All-Celebrity variety in his 2nd season.

Corridor of Famer Oscar Robertson is the one different participant in NBA historical past to general as many issues, rebounds and assists as Simmons via his first two seasons.

Even with out Simmons, Australia’s ‘Boomers’ group usually are a drive in China, with present and previous NBA avid gamers together with Andrew Bogut, Joe Ingles, Patty Turbines, Aron Baynes and Matthew Dellavedova set to be integrated of their squad.

Simmons mentioned he would play Australia’s house Global Cup warmups in opposition to the US and Canada in Perth and Melbourne subsequent month.

Australia were drawn in Team H in China together with Canada, Senegal and Lithuania.

The Boomers play their opener in opposition to Canada on Sept. 1 in Dongguan.

Reporting through Ian Ransom; Enhancing through Greg Stutchbury

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