Jose Calderon to skip EuroBasket

Embed from Getty Images

Spain’s Jose Calderon has announced that he will not play for the national team at this summer’s Eurobasket.

The New York Knicks point guard missed a chunk of last season due to a sore Achilles and wants to use this off-season to recover and be ready for training camp.

“I am not retiring from the Spanish national team,” Calderon told Spanish outlet Marca. “I still want to play basketball and now I have to fully recover from my injuries.”

It means that new Spain coach Sergio Scariolo will be without his two prized point guards for this summer’s Olympic qualifying tournament as Minnesota Timberwolves’ Ricky Rubio is shelved following successful ankle surgery.

This will give Real Madrid’s Sergio Rodriguez more playing time at the point.

Calderon was part of the Spain team that last won the Eurobasket gold medal in 2011. Spain went on to claim the silver at the 2012 London Olympics.

Spain will travel to Berlin’s 02 World Arena for Eurobasket and face Serbia, Germany, Italy, Turkey and Iceland in Group B. The latter stages of the tournament will be held in Lille, France.

The two finalists will automatically qualify the 2016 Olympics in Rio with the teams that finish in third, fourth, fifth and sixth earning a place in the additional qualifiers to take place next year.