LeBron James no irá a Tokio / Lakers’ LeBron James Says He Won’t Take Part in 2021 Tokyo Olympics

Los Ángeles.- LeBron James, que no pudo evitar la eliminación de Los Angeles Lakers en la primera ronda de los ‘playoff’, descartó este jueves su participación en los Juegos Olímpicos de Tokio 2020 con la selección de los Estados Unidos.

Tras la derrota de los Lakers ante los Phoenix Suns (100-113), que ha dejado a los actuales campeones fuera de los ‘playoff’ en la primera ronda, James comentó ante los medios que dedicará este verano a recuperar su maltrecho tobillo.

Y también señaló con tono bromista que, en lugar de acudir a Tokio a 2020 para competir con la selección estadounidense, empleará los meses veraniegos en jugar para el equipo de «Space Jam: A New Legacy», la secuela de «Space Jam» (1996) que se estrenará en julio con James como protagonista en lugar de Michael Jordan.

La estrella de los Lakers, que nunca había perdido en una primera ronda, felicitó a los de Phoenix por su «excelente» rendimiento en esta eliminatoria.

Lakers’ LeBron James Says He Won’t Take Part in 2021 Tokyo Olympics

Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James will not go for his third career Olympic gold medal at the 2021 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.

According to Tim Reynolds of the Associated Press, James made the announcement Thursday night after the Lakers fell 113-110 to the Phoenix Suns in Game 6 of their first-round playoff series, resulting in the defending champions getting eliminated.

Per Reynolds, James added the following in reference to his upcoming movie Space Jam: A New Legacy: “No, I think I’m going to play for the Toon Squad this summer instead of the Olympics. I think that’s what I’ll focus on, trying to beat the Monstars or the Goon Squad, we call them now.”

LeBron played in the 2004, 2008 and 2012 Summer Games, winning bronze in 2004 and then gold in both 2008 and 2012.

On the heels of leading the Cleveland Cavaliers to their first NBA championship, James sat out the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. That left Team USA without one of its biggest stars, but the Americans still went on to win their third consecutive gold medal.

While the Lakers were ousted in the first round of the playoffs this year, they won it all last year and experienced the shortest offseason in the history of major North American professional sports leagues.

On top of that, James missed a significant amount of time during the 2020-21 campaign with an ankle injury, meaning he could use the added rest going into next season.

Even without James, Team USA promises to be the heavy favorite to win gold in Tokyo due to the deep and talented group of players who have been named finalists.

Among the star players who have been named finalists are Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry, Los Angeles Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard, Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard, Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum, New Orleans Pelicans forward Zion Williamson, Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young, Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal, Phoenix Suns guards Devin Booker and Chris Paul, and the Brooklyn Nets’ Big Three of Kevin Durant, James Harden and Kyrie Irving.

James’ Lakers teammate Anthony Davis is also a finalist, although he battled injuries throughout the 2020-21 season as well and tried to gut it out through a groin strain in Thursday’s Game 6. MIKE CHIARI