February 28, 2024

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Team USA basketball: Bradley Beal to miss Tokyo Olympics; JaVale McGee, Keldon Johnson added as replacements

The U.S. men’s basketball team announced Thursday afternoon that Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal will miss the Tokyo Olympics this summer as he’s entered the health and safety protocols at Team USA training camp. Here’s Team USA’s statement:

“USA Basketball Men’s National Team point guard Bradley Beal (Washington Wizards), who was placed under USA Basketball’s health and safety protocols Wednesday, will remain in health and safety protocols and will be unable to participate in the July 23-August 8 Tokyo Olympic Games. A roster replacement will be named at a later time.

Out of an abundance of caution, USA Basketball Men’s National Team member Jerami Grant has been placed under USA Basketball’s health and safety protocols, USA Basketball announced Thursday afternoon.”

On Friday, Kevin Love also made it know he’s withdrawing from competing in the Olympics due to a lingering calf injury. To replace Beal and Love on the 12-man roster, Team USA reportedly added Nuggets big man JaVale McGee and Spurs forward Keldon Johnson. 

Being forced to miss the Olympics is a tough break for Beal, who was extremely excited about the opportunity to represent the United States on the world stage. 

“To represent the country, it’s a blessing. It’s an honor. It’s something that you don’t take for granted,” Beal said in a recent interview with CBS Sports’ Michael Kaskey-Blomain. “Not a lot of guys in the league get this opportunity. We all know that. So, you embrace it. You understand that the U.S. wants you to win, and everyone else wants you to lose. We didn’t live up to what we wanted to a few years ago [in the 2019 FIBA World Cup], and so now we have an opportunity to get back what’s rightfully ours… This has always been my dream.” 

It is unclear how exactly Team USA’s protocols, or those that will be in place at the Olympics, differ from the protocols the NBA had in place during the season, but the Olympics are not taking many chances in the middle of this pandemic as the number of positive cases continue to spike in Japan. There will not be fans at the Olympics themselves, and now Beal will not be there either. 

The Olympic games begin on Sunday, July 25 when Team USA takes on France. Games against Iran and the Czech Republic will follow, and then, assuming Team USA makes it that far, the single-elimination stage begins on Aug. 3.