Grant Hill, the executive director of USA Basketball, revealed that suspensions were a factor in Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green’s omission from Team USA’s 41-player pool released Tuesday.
“His contributions have been significant, and he is a real part of the legacy of this organization for his excellence,” Hill said, according to Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press. “But in lieu of what’s transpired this year, we made a decision to not have (Green) on this list.”
The NBA suspended Green twice this season for on-court altercations with opposing players. He served a five-game ban for putting Rudy Gobert in a headlock and was then suspended indefinitely six games after his return for striking Phoenix Suns center Jusuf Nurkic in the face.
The Warriors veteran had to meet league-issued criteria, including undergoing counseling, before he could return. He missed 16 contests, four of which were due to reconditioning after he had been reinstated.
Green represented the United States at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, helping the Americans win gold at both tournaments. He started in the tournament-opening defeat against France in Tokyo before reverting to a role off the bench for the rest of the event.
The 33-year-old has played in 15 games for the men’s national team since joining the program for the 2016 Games, making four starts.
“We all understand and certainly have great respect and sensitivity to this particular period in his career, and he’s working through some things both on and off the court,” Hill said. “We at USA Basketball wanted to support him on his journey, and we just didn’t feel that playing over the summer gives him the best opportunity to do what he needs to do.”