NBA MVP Kevin Durant has withdrawn his name from consideration for Team USA prior to the FIBA World Cup.
“This was an extremely difficult decision as I take great pride in representing our country,” Durant said in a statement released on Thursday. “I know that I owe it to my USA Basketball teammates to be totally invested in the experience. After going through training camp with USAB, I realized I could not fulfill my responsibilities to the team from both a time and energy standpoint.
“I need to take a step back and take some time away, both mentally and physically in order to prepare for the upcoming NBA season. I will be rooting for USAB and look forward to future opportunities with them.”
There are 15 finalist for Team USA leading up to the FIBA World Cup which will be held Aug. 30 to Sept. 14 in Spain.
Additionally Nike, Adidas and Under Armour are all attempting to sign Durant to endorsement deals which could pay him upwards of $30 million annually.
Durant is scheduled to make a hair under $19 million with the Oklahoma City Thunder this season and will top $20 million with them next season before becoming a free agent in 2016.