Report: Duncan Unlikely for Olympics

Tuesday, August 1st 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Tim Duncan has notified NBA officials that he probably won't play in the Olympics, according to a published report.

The San Antonio Express-News reported Tuesday that members of the U.S. national team selection committee are still trying to persuade Duncan to participate in the Sydney Games, but that it appears unlikely he will change his mind.

Duncan, one of the biggest prizes in this year's free-agent pool, has said he will re-sign with the San Antonio Spurs, reportedly for three years. The 24-year-old forward led the Spurs to their only NBA title in 1998-99, but missed last season's playoffs with an injured left knee.

Duncan underwent surgery to repair torn cartilage in the knee May 24, but did not begin a full rehabilitation regimen until two weeks ago.

Although Duncan has not had any significant setbacks, he would have little time to rest before next season if he played in Sydney.

The Olympic team begins practice Aug. 25 in Hawaii, and the gold-medal game is scheduled for Oct. 1, just days before most NBA teams open training camp. The month-long Olympic schedule also would require Duncan to be away from his father, who was in the hospital recently.

Duncan would be the third player to leave the latest Dream Team in the past five months. Tom Gugliotta and Grant Hill won't play because of injuries. They were replaced by Vince Carter and Shareef Abdur-Rahim.