Lamar Odom is the latest to withdraw from Team USA, leaving only 15 players on the roster heading into the first day of training camp Thursday.
“Lamar has told us that he is unable to play for the United States this summer,” Team USA managing director Jerry Colangelo said. “While it is unfortunate to have lost the players we have, Coach Krzyzewski and I remain extremely confident with the group of players we’ll have at our training camp in Las Vegas. We believe that we will still have an outstanding collection of talent and that ultimately we will have another team that all Americans will be excited about and proud of.
Already, Team USA has lost Dwight Howard, Dwyane Wade, LaMarcus Aldridge, Derrick Rose and Chris Bosh because of injuries.
No explanation was given for Odom’s withdrawal.
His defection depletes the American roster of a much-needed big man. Odom played center for Team USA at the 2010 World Championship in Istanbul.
The only true, experienced center left on the roster is Tyson Chandler. Anthony Davis, the No. 1 pick of the New Orleans Hornets, will report to camp despite spraining his ankle in a workout last week.
Colangelo is set to announce the 12-man roster Thursday night, but FIBA rules allow for changes to be made up until the eve of the Olympics.
The roster currently includes Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant, LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Chandler, Davis, Kevin Love, Rudy Gay, Andre Iguodala, Carmelo Anthony, Blake Griffin, Eric Gordon, Chris Paul, Deron Williams, and James Harden.