With the 2012-13 NBA season over, some players will now be turning their attention to summer play with their respective countries for Olympic qualifying tournaments.
For San Antonio Spurs French contingency of Tony Parker, Nando De Colo and Boris Diaw, that means summer play with Team France for Eurobasket 2013 in Slovenia.
The trio have been named to the initial roster for Team France along with other French NBA players such as Ronny Turiaf, Evan Fournier and Nicolas Batum.
Here is the complete 17-man preliminary roster:
Among those invited are three players who play in Spanish clubs: Thomas Heurtel (Vitoria), Kim Tillie (CB Murcia) and Florent Pietrus (Valencia)
The list of 17 players who will be in 12 in the coming weeks, is composed by: Tony Parker (San Antonio Spurs / USA), Leo Westermann (Partizan Belgrade / SRB), Antoine Diot (Paris-Levallois/FRA), Thomas Heurtel (Vitoria / ESP), Evan Fournier (Denver Nuggets / USA), Nando De Colo (San Antonio Spurs / USA), Yannick Bokolo (Gravelines / FRA), Edwin Jackson (ASVEL / FRA), Nicolas Batum (Portland Trail Blazers / USA ), Charles Kahudi (Le Mans / FRA), Mickaël Gelabale (Minnesota Timberwolves / USA), Boris Diaw (San Antonio Spurs / USA), Joffrey Lauvergne (Partizan Belgrade / SRB), Kim Tillie (CB Murcia / ESP), Florent Pietrus (Valence / ESP), Ronny Turiaf (LA Clippers / USA), Alexis Ajinca (Strasbourg / FRA).
Substitutes: Rudy Gobert (Cholet / FRA), Andrew Albicy (París-Levallois/FRA), Jean-Charles Livio (ASVEL / FRA), Jeremy Leloup (Strasbourg / FRA), Adrien Moerman (Limoges / FRA). EFE
Joakim Noah will not be part of the roster due to injury.
Of course the debate among most Spurs fans is always whether foreign players, such as Parker, should put their body through more wear and tear in the NBA offseason and risk injury, rather than rest up for the new season.
Parker had a long season, playing in the NBA Finals, and of course suffered an ankle injury during the regular season which sidelined him for a few games. Add the fact he is the Spurs primary offensive threat and Spurs fans (and perhaps coaching staff) will be a bit nervous.
De Colo and Diaw can use the play to keep in shape in the offseason and well as work on their game. Especially for Nando.
Eurobasket 2013 is set to kick off September 4-22 in Slovenia.
(via El Confidencial)