In a surprise move, Rajon Rondo made it easy for Coach K and Jerry Colangelo by pulling himself out of consideration for Team USA’s final roster going into the FIBA World Championship.
Rondo, along with Danny Granger, logged a DNP-CD in Sunday’s exhibition against Spain, which Coach K implied only happened because he wanted to give on-the-bubble guards Stephen Curry, Russell Westbrook and Eric Gordon a chance to display what they could do. Considering that Rondo was in Team USA’s starting five in the previous tune-ups against France and Lithuania, his spot seemed secure.
“Rajon came to us and said he was going to withdraw from the team, that he had some family matters to attend to and some things to take care of before the NBA season,” Colangelo was quoted on USA Basketball’s website. “He did an outstanding job during our training, we appreciate the effort and commitment he made to our program and he completely has our support.”
As for Rondo’s side of the story, earlier in the day he talked to reporters and made it sound like he was going to be cut rather than withdraw.
“I think I’m on the bubble,” Rondo told ESPN. “Just looking at the obvious — I got a DNP last game. That pretty much speaks for itself.”
So here’s the final Team USA roster:
Guards — Chauncey Billups, Derrick Rose, Stephen Curry, Eric Gordon, Russell Westbrook
Forwards — Kevin Durant, Andre Iguodala, Rudy Gay, Kevin Love, Danny Granger
Centers — Tyson Chandler, Lamar Odom