Grant Hill Rejects Theory Of Why Jaylen Brown Was Left Off Team USA

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Boston Celtics star Jaylen Brown seemed like a logical replacement for Kawhi Leonard on Team USA.

Brown, who is fresh off winning both Eastern Conference finals and NBA Finals MVP honors, has a very similar build and skill set to Leonard, who exited the team ahead of the 2024 Summer Olympics due to a knee injury.

But Brown, despite having the necessary credentials, never got the call Wednesday to join the squad. Instead, it went to Brown’s Celtics teammate Derrick White.

Brown seemed perplexed by that decision by sending out a cryptic tweet and even went as far to suggest he was left off the 12-player team due to Nike’s close affiliation with USA Basketball. Brown has openly criticized Nike in the past.

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USA Basketball managing director Grant Hill addressed the decision to not choose Brown and rejected Brown’s theory for why he won’t be representing Team USA at the upcoming Olympics.

“For a good portion of my career, I wore FILA. That was supposed to be a joke,” Hill told reporters, per HoopsHype’s Michael Scotto. “We’re proud of our partners obviously at USA Basketball. This is about putting together a team. … The responsibility that I have is to put together a team. And a team that compliments each other, a team that fits, a team that will give us the best opportunity for success. Whatever theories that might be out there, they’re just that.”

Grant added the toughest part of his job is leaving well-qualified players off the roster that he’s a “fan of.”

Brown had a chance to make Team USA since he was among the 28-player pool used to determine the squad, but couldn’t crack the final roster.

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He certainly had a case to make that he should be headed to Paris later this month. The 27-year-old scored 23 points per game on an efficient 49.9% shooting from the floor and averaged 5.5 rebounds and a career-high 3.6 assists to go along with his postseason exploits.

But unless another injury replacement is needed and an invite is extended to Brown, he will be left on the outside watching Team USA, which has a Celtics flair to it. White joined Jayson Tatum and Jrue Holiday as the Celtics trio goes on the hunt for a gold medal.

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