Former San Antonio Spur Derrick White replaces Kawhi Leonard on Team USA

Leonard, also a one-time Spur, dropped out due to apparent injury concerns from the Clippers.

click to enlarge Kawhi Leonard played only nine games with the Spurs during his final season here. - Wikimedia Commons / Jose Garcia
Wikimedia Commons / Jose Garcia
Kawhi Leonard played only nine games with the Spurs during his final season here.
Former but still beloved San Antonio Spur Derrick White is now officially a member of the U.S. Olympic Team's basketball roster.

Ironically, White will replace a considerably less-adored one-time Spur, Kawhi Leonard.

Although the injury-prone Leonard had a few strong practices with the 12-member Olympic squad, USA Basketball and management from the Los Angeles Clippers — Leonard's current team — felt it best for the two-time NBA Champion not to compete in Paris later this month, according to an online statement.
Due to a knee injury, Leonard missed four of the Clippers' six 2024 first-round NBA playoff games against the eventual Western Conference Champion Dallas Mavericks.

Indeed, Leonard is no stranger to injuries or missed games. During his final season with the Spurs in 2017-18, the "Claw" only played nine games due to a quad injury. He then demanded a trade to Toronto, where he seemed perfectly healthy, leading the Raptors to the franchise's first and only championship.

Meanwhile, White is coming off his best career regular season performance, averaging 15 points, 5 assist and 4 rebounds along with shooting nearly 40% from the three-point line.

White will join his fellow NBA Champion teammates Jason Tatum and Jrue Holiday on Team USA, meaning that a quarter of all the team's members played for Boston last season.

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Michael Karlis

Michael Karlis is a Staff Writer at the San Antonio Current. He is a graduate of American University in Washington, D.C., whose work has been featured in Salon, Alternet, Creative Loafing Tampa Bay, Orlando Weekly, NewsBreak, 420 Magazine and Mexico Travel Today. He reports primarily on breaking news, politics...

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