No health concerns, but Westbrook believed to want to avoid any risks.
Oklahoma City Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook has withdrawn from the USA Basketball player pool for the World Cup in Spain this summer.
The 25-year-old missed 36 games last season after having two procedures on his surgically repaired right knee, and as a result it is understood that even though there is no real risk of injury, he is keen to play it safe and avoid over-exerting himself.
It had previously been suggested that Westbrook would feature and help the team defend their 2010 gold at the World Championships in Turkey, but now a team spokesman has revealed that he will not be considered.
Despite returning for the final three months of the season after the last procedure back in December, Westbrook continued to have his minutes restricted through to the post-season where the Oklahoma City Thunder were defeated by the San Antonio Spurs in the Western Conference Finals.
Westbrook averaged 21.8 points and 6.9 assists per game which was an increase on his career averages as it was an indication that he had become more efficient after spending less time on the court.
However, given the strength in depth that Team USA possess at the point guard position, it is unlikely that they will particularly miss his presence this summer if they can keep their other star players healthy in the next month or two.
Stephen Curry, Damian Lillard and Kyrie Irving will all likely be available for selection, while Chicago Bulls star Derrick Rose is expected to be considered after joining up with the rest of the players for a training camp later this month.
Having played in just 50 games over the past three seasons, there are genuine doubts over Rose’s future moving forward and how effective he can be.
Back-to-back serious knee surgeries have halted his progress amid fears over whether or not he will ever be able to return to his previous level of performance, but ultimately he will look to use this summer as a springboard to get back in condition in order to lead the Bulls next season.
However, with Curry, Lillard and Irving, Team USA have a trio of genuine superstar guards at their disposal, and will still be considered favourites to win the tournament despite other high profile names also opting against taking part.
Following on from the training camp, the team have an exhibition schedule in August before the tournament begins in September, and although Westbrook is expected to be present for training, he will not play as he takes the summer to rest and prepare for the new NBA season.