Chris Bosh opts out of Olympics to rest, rehab injury

MIAMI (AP) — Chris Bosh told USA Basketball on Friday he is withdrawing from consideration for the London Olympics so he can fully recover from the strained abdominal muscle that sidelined him for part of Miami’s run to the NBA championship.

Bosh announced the decision through agent Henry Thomas one day after Miami teammate Dwyane Wade pulled out of the U.S. Olympic squad because of looming left knee surgery.

“This injury was a pretty serious one,” Thomas said. “He was able to come back and play under the circumstances because he was trying to contribute to them winning a championship. There’s still pain. There’s still discomfort. And the real concern is if he doesn’t rest and do the rehab associated with the injury, this could become sort of a chronic thing for him.”

Bosh made the decision after consulting with Heat physician Dr. Harlan Selesnick and others. Bosh, who played for the team that won gold at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, called USA Basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski and team chairman Jerry Colangelo on Friday.

“He wanted to be part of it,” Thomas said. “It was a great experience in ’08. Feels like it could be another one. The exposure he would get being part of that team is something he would like. But at the end of the day, his health going forward is more important than all of those things.”

With Wade and Bosh out, there are 16 players left for 12 spots on the U.S. team — with LeBron James the lone Heat player. The team convenes in Las Vegas next week to start training camp, then has five exhibitions with international teams before opening Olympic play against France on July 29.

USA Basketball plans to announce the Olympic roster around July 7.

Bosh averaged 14.6 points and 9.4 rebounds in the NBA Finals.

The championship completed an emotional two months for Bosh, who briefly left the Heat during their first-round series against New York in order to see the birth of his son. He dealt with the injury in the second round, and he and his wife mourned the death of a masseuse they employed later in the playoffs.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.