Healing Lowry latest to withdraw from U.S. basketball squad

Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry has been mentioned as potential trade chip.

Another All-Star has excused himself from the U.S. men’s basketball team, as Toronto Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry became the latest to withdraw, as Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN relayed.

Unlike the others, though, Lowry is leaving because he apparently has no choice. He underwent thumb surgery last month and despite a desire to play for Team USA, has not yet been cleared to practice, according to Josh Lewenberg of TSN.

The U.S. roster has been decimated by defections since the start of July, with Anthony Davis (Los Angeles Lakers), James Harden (Houston Rockets), Damian Lillard (Portland Trail Blazers) and Kevin Love (Cleveland Cavaliers) among some of the more-notables to back out.

The U.S. is coached by Gregg Popovich (San Antonio Spurs) and begins play in the FIBA World Cup on Sunday, Sept. 1 vs. the Czech Republic in Shanghai. The gold medal game is scheduled for Sunday, Sept. 15, just a couple weeks before the start of NBA training camp.

“This is USA Basketball, this is a huge achievement,” Hornets point guard Kemba Walker said. “It’s a huge honor to be a part of this.”

Along with Walker, the U.S. camp roster consists of Marcus SmartDe’Aaron FoxJaylen BrownHarrison BarnesThaddeus Young , Jayson TatumKhris MiddletonDonovan Mitchell and Kyle Kuzma at the guard and small forward positions. Mason PlumleeBam AdebayoBrook LopezMyles Turner and P.J. Tucker are others in the frontcourt.

“All I care about is who’s here,” said Popovich said. “I’ve got a fine group of guys. We’re going to try to get them to form the best possible team we can.”