- LeBron James has decided to skip the 2016 Olympics in Rio for a time of rest
- Other NBA stars have also decided to skip the Olympics
- Athletes from different sports have expressed their fears over participating because of the Zika virus in Rio
The recently crowned 2016 NBA Finals MVP, LeBron James, has decided to skip his attendance at the 2016 Olympics in Rio. Based on reports written from a statement from Cleveland Cavaliers, the basketball superstar has chosen to rest instead.
James just recently led the Cleveland Cavaliers to a nail-biting victory against the Golden State Warriors in an exciting seven-game NBA Finals series. James is not the first of NBA players who have chosen to not participate in the Games.
The three-time NBA champion has won gold medals with Team USA at the 2008 and 2012 Olympics.
Earlier last week, forward from the San Antonio Spurs Kawhi Leonard also announced through his team that he would not participate in the Olympics. He did not disclose the reason.
“This was a very difficult decision. It’s an honor to have been considered for the team and I hope that in the future I will have the chance to represent my country by playing for USA Basketball,” the 24-year-old Leonard said in a statement.
The forward averaged a career-high record of 21.2 points, 6.8 rebounds and 2.6 assists per game for his team during the recent 2015-2016 season.
Other finalists who have decided not to play in the Rio games include Steph Curry, James Harden, Russell Westbrook, Chris Paul, and LaMarcus Aldridge. Among those who have decided to participate include Carmelo Anthony, Jimmy Butler, DeAndre Jordan, Kyle Lowry, DeMar DeRozan, and Klay Thompson.
Many athletes from other sports have decided to opt out of their participation in the August 2016 Olympics due to their fears over the Zika virus present in Brazil. None of the NBA players who have decided to skip the Game have cited the virus as a factor in their decision.
Zika is a mosquito-borne virus that can result to crippling birth defects in children and the neurological disorder Guillain-Barre in adults.