Indiana Pacers All-Star Victor Oladipo will not be joining the Pacers in Orlando next week.
Instead, Oladipo told Shams Charnia of The Athletic that he will sit out the rest of the NBA season.
“I really want to play, and as a competitor and teammate this is tearing me apart,” Oladipo told The Athletic. “I feel like I’m at a great place in my rehab and getting closer and closer to 100%. With all the variables, from how I have to build my 5-on-5 workload back up, to the increased risk of a soft tissue injury which could delay my rehab, and the unknown exact set up of the bubble, I just can’t get my mind to being fully comfortable in playing.
“I have to be smart and this decision hasn’t been easy, but I truly believe continuing on the course I’m on and getting fully healthy for the 2020-21 season is the right decision for me.”
The news comes just a day after Oladipo told reporters that he was not sure whether he would play in Orlando.
Pacers coach Nate McMillan said earlier this week he expected Oladipo to play when the season resumed.
The Pacers are scheduled to arrive in Orlando on July 9 and begin play Aug. 1. They played most of the 2019-20 season without their star guard.
Oladipo played in 13 games during the 2019-20 campaign. The former IU All-American had his right quad tendon repaired last year. He missed most of this season before returning Jan. 29.
Oladipo will be in the final year of his contract with the Pacers during the 2020-21 season and he is likely enter next summer as an unrestricted free agent.
Despite the contract considerations, Oladipo told The Athletic that his decision was based on his health.
“I understand this is a business,” Oladipo said. “I’m making this decision based on my health. I want to be at the best form possible.”
After a three year career at IU from 2010 to 2013, Oladipo was recently named to the Big Ten’s All-Decade Team.
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