National Teams

Ben Gordon Explains Reason Behind Withdrawal

August 17, 2011 15:19 pm 9 comments

by Sam Neter

Ben Gordon has revealed he chose not to play for Great Britain this summer due to the birth of his first son, and added he felt that with the ongoing NBA lockout the risk of injury was too high.

Many fans were left disappointed after his no-show this year, and have questioned his commitment to the GB programme. However, explaining to US sports and pop culture website Grantland.com why he didn’t play for GB this summer he said:

“There is always next summer when the Olympics are in London. I really had my mind set that I would play this summer, but with the birth of my first son, to me, it wasn’t best suited for my family and I didn’t want to rush the situation and have it be an inconvenience. It would probably be smart to wait until next year. On top of that, all the stuff that’s going on with the lockout, there were too many bad signs so I didn’t want to force it and end up regretting it.

When the NBA announced the lockout, they sent a letter out that said staff members form the team are not allowed to have contact, et cetera, et cetera. Number nine on the letter pretty much says any serious injury you might acquire while the lockout is going on can void your contract. So right now, my risk tolerance is pretty low. There’s no need to put myself in that type of risk right now. It’s not like the Olympics are this summer. I just pretty much weighed my options until the very last minute and then just went with my gut feeling. With my son, traveling certain countries at this young age, I didn’t want to put him through that right now.”

British Basketball fully expect Gordon to be involved with the programme next year, with performance director Chris Spice having said he is “key to performing at our peak at London 2012″.

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  • InsideMan

    So he gets to choose when he plays for his ‘nation’. No wonder British basketball is such a joke, when is playing basketball not a risk, its the European Championships this year, Luol Deng hasnt joined the team yet and this other NBA superstar hasn’t shown up because of this. Basically he wants to come and take a spot next year and people like Chris Spice respect his decision? So the younger kids and elder players that have been with GB just have to respect that they will lose a spot on the roster in what will be a highlight of their career, so this selfish NBA star can play for GB when he feels like it, (The Olympics) so he can say he did it? Isn’t playing for ‘your country’ meant to be the proudest moment of any individuals career? No wonder the BBC laugh, because they know that British Basketball is a joke, why would anybody in this nation want to support a bunch of players that dont come from this nation, a bunch of coaches that dont come from this nation, and a bunch of directors that dont come from this nation. may aswell rename it GEFB – Great Every Fucking Body

    • Jaimie

      I completely agree, give the spot to one of the younger players who have been committed to the team this summer!

  • Mr Gorilla

    doesnt really inspire confidence for the Olympics this, I wouldnt bank on him being there

  • Taylor

    Neither Ben nor Luol deserve to put on a GB kit and represent in Olympics, its a joke(Luol not playing till weekend because of his camp) load of crap! test events dates were not decided last week come on! because one has a status does not mean you have to stop working for your country, that gave you that start, they should not be allowed to pick and choose when people pay money to see the team at home, what role models are they setting, if only the young kids just wouldnt go by names and really look into what they really do or dont?

    • Tom S

      Say what you want about Gordon but you invalidate your argument by attacking Luol. Anyone with any knowledge of the GB team knows what Luol has done to try to make our country a legitimate basketball nation. Not a role model! Please, he is not out partying he is inspiring the next generation of UK ballers so this team doesn’t just become a one-off fueled by his sublime talent. Don’t talk about looking into what people ‘really do’ when you are attacking Luol Deng, one of the best role models in WORLD basketball not just GB.

  • Ben Gordon is a Chump

    Ben Gordon should not even be allowed in the country next summer let alone make our Olympic basketball team. The guy’s a joke. From day one he is only interested in playing in 2012. If he was to play he would never play for (or probably even visit) ‘his’ country again. It sounds like from his interview that this is a one time thing – ‘there is always next summer’.

    Actually, let him come to training camp, play in the warm-up games, get used to the vibe and then cut him whilst making up some lousy excuse. Even if the team will not be as good, do not let Gordon play for GB.

  • jimbob

    well, if a chump is someone who doesnt want to play for a fourth tier national side which isnt even your country and will probably get swept in the first round like in its only ever appearance,,,then i think lots of players are chumps…….naturalized players obviously dont give a **** if they have never even lived in the country…thas the problem with gb, half our team is born abroad…as his name suggests van oostrum is not even english, joghnson is canadian, reinking american….its pretty weak to be honest im dissapointed..

  • InsideMan

    van oostrum is british, half the team has foriegn sounding names and so does a large number of england doesnt mean they arent british

    • Taylor

      Yes insideman i dont think people understand dual national, they are just going by name! Jimbob taking crap!

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