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Gilbert Arenas States Team USA Need Not Lie About Kawhi Leonard’s Dismissal

Advait Jajodia
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Gilbert Arenas States Team USA Need Not Lie About Kawhi Leonard's Dismissal

Merely hours before Team USA began their series of exhibition games ahead of the 2024 Olympics, they dropped a massive bomb by stating that Kawhi Leonard pulled out from the team. Apart from implying that Leonard wasn’t ready to suit up, no reason was provided for the same even in the team’s official statement. Hence, Gilbert Arenas urges personnel to explain the decision.

Leonard was already dealing with a horrific knee injury that he sustained during the Los Angeles Clippers first-round series against the Dallas Mavericks. No concrete timeline for his return nor any update was provided by the organization. However, basketball enthusiasts were elated after seeing the Claw present at the Team USA camp.

Now, fans are taken aback by the news of Leonard’s dismissal. With no injury update being provided yet again, Gilbert Arenas is urging Team USA to unveil the logic behind the same. Arenas said on the Gil’s Arena podcast,

“So he couldn’t handle it when they (Team USA members) were watching him back then, then you don’t need to give us this fluff story. Just say ‘he wasn’t equipped yet to even participate, but he came out there, showed his face and we’ve been trying to replace him ever since’. Let’s just be honest. Think about the wording – “he had a few strong practices” – what the f**k does that mean?”

To be fair, the statement released by Team USA was a bit ambiguous. No details were provided, leaving the fans justifiably confused.

“Kawhi has been ramping up for the Olympics over the past several weeks and had a few strong practices in Las Vegas. He felt ready to compete. However, he respects that USA Basketball and the Clippers determined it’s in his best interest to spend the remainder of the summer preparing for the upcoming season rather than participating in the Olympic Games in Paris,” Team USA’s statement read.

 

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Additionally, Team USA’s selection of Derrick White as a replacement also caused quite a stir.

Derrick White as a replacement for Kawhi Leonard over Jaylen Brown?

Fans were expecting the likes of Jaylen Brown or Kyrie Irving to be called up once the news regarding Kawhi Leonard’s dismissal came out. Hence, the selection of Derrick White wasn’t welcomed.

Not only the fans, but Jaylen Brown also expressed his dissatisfaction. Instead of being happy for his Celtics teammate, Brown took to X (formerly “Twitter”) and felt like he was snubbed by adding an emoji-filed tweet. In a subsequent tweet, Brown also called out Nike for omitting him from this Team USA roster.

It is a bit strange that the current Finals MVP is not part of the national team. The fact that three other Boston Celtics members – Jayson Tatum, Jrue Holiday, and Derrick White – are part of the squad makes this snub even more disrespectful.

Post Edited By:Bhavani Singh

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Advait Jajodia

Advait Jajodia

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Advait Jajodia, a seasoned NBA journalist, has had a passion for the game for over a decade. His journey from admiring Kobe Bryant's precision to being in awe of Stephen Curry's long-range mastery instilled a profound understanding of basketball. With a background as a two-time National-level player, Advait uses his experience on the hardwood to offer insightful analysis. Over three years of dedicated sports journalism has equipped the 21-year-old with a unique perspective, reflected in his prolific portfolio of 3,700+ articles.

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