It seems like Nick Nurse and Canada’s men’s basketball team can’t catch a break as they prepare for the 2019 FIBA World Cup.
Adrian Wojnarowski, ESPN’s senior NBA insider, reported Tuesday night that Kelly Olynyk will not be able to compete for Canada due to the knee injury that he suffered last week.
The Miami Heat forward slipped during the third quarter of Canada’s 96-87 victory in an exhibition game against Nigeria at the Mattamy Athletic Centre in Toronto.
here's the sequence in the third quarter where kelly olynyk slipped on a wet spot on the floor and had to be helped to the locker room pic.twitter.com/RUn5R8zmgL— Yahoo Sports Canada (@YahooCASports) August 8, 2019
Thankfully for Olynyk and the Heat, it is believed that the bruised knee won’t impact his ability to start the NBA season in the fall.
However, the 28-year-old joins a long list of Canadian NBA stars that won’t be competing for their country as a result of a variety of ailments and reasons. Jamal Murray of the Denver Nuggets (ankle), RJ Barrett of the New York Knicks (calf) and Chris Boucher (personal reasons) have already pulled out of the tournament, which is set to get underway on Aug. 31.
As a result, Khem Birch (Orlando Magic) and Cory Joseph (Sacramento Kings) are the only players on the roster with NBA experience under their belts.
Last season in Miami — his second campaign with the squad following four as a Boston Celtic — Olynyk played in a career-high 79 regular seasons contests in which he averaged 10.0 points and 4.7 rebounds per game.
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