KKTV 11 News | Colorado Springs, Pueblo | Sports

Billups Passes On Olympics

By: AP
By: AP

Chauncey Billups pulled himself out of consideration for a spot on the USA Basketball team in the Beijing Games, a person in the NBA told The Associated Press on Tuesday night.

The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because he did not want to speak publicly for Billups.

Billups, an All-Star point guard for the Detroit Pistons, might've had a hard time making the team anyway with guards such as Jason Kidd, Dwyane Wade, Chris Paul and Deron Williams available for the roster.

Last year, Billups played for the U.S. team that was led by Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony during an unbeaten run in an Olympic qualifying tournament.

Messages seeking comment were left with Billups and his agent, Andy Miller, on Tuesday night.

U.S. Olympic team coach Mike Krzyzewski said the roster will be announced Monday during a news conference in Chicago.

Earlier this month, USA Basketball managing director Jerry Colangelo said the squad would be selected without a tryout. More than 30 players are in the national team program, but officials have said the candidates have been whittled down to about 14.

The deadline to submit the roster is July 1.

The U.S. team will go to Las Vegas to train and play an exhibition against Canada before opening the Beijing Games against the host Chinese on Aug. 10.

Billups missed two-plus games with a strained right hamstring during the second round of the playoffs, but recovered well enough to help Detroit advance to the Eastern Conference finals for the sixth straight year.

He averaged 27.5 points, six assists and 1.5 turnovers over the final two games against the Boston Celtics, who eliminated Detroit in Game 6.

Billups developed into one of the NBA's top point guards with the Pistons after bouncing around the NBA.

The former Colorado star was drafted No. 3 overall in 1997 by Boston and was traded to Toronto during his rookie season. He also landed in Denver, Orlando and Minnesota within his first four seasons in the league.

Billups signed with Detroit as a free agent in 2002, when it started an active streak of advancing to the conference finals, and was the MVP of the NBA finals when the franchise won a title in 2004.

He re-signed with the Pistons last summer, getting $46 million guaranteed over four seasons with the team holding a $14 million option for the fifth year.

Billups has averaged nearly 15 points and 5.5 assists over his career.


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