AKRON, Ohio (AP) — LeBron James has all the gold he needs this summer.
Days after leading the Cleveland Cavaliers to the NBA title, James has decided not to play in the Rio Games and chase a third Olympic gold medal.
Agent Rich Paul told The Associated Press on Thursday night that James informed USA Basketball of his decision on Thursday, ending weeks of speculation about what the four-time league MVP would do once the season ended.
The 31-year-old James was named Finals MVP after leading the Cavs past the Golden State Warriors, ending Cleveland’s 52-year pro sports championship drought.
James and his teammates were honored Wednesday with a parade attended by nearly one million spectators in Cleveland. Following a post-parade rally, left the rally clutching the golden Larry O’Brien Trophy, the only shiny reward he’ll chase this summer.
James took the trophy home and brought it with him on Thursday night to a rally in his hometown of Akron, Ohio. His voice hoarse from several exhausting days since the Cavs won, James addressed a tightly packed crowd for just 2 minutes and left without speaking to reporters.
The three-time champion is the latest big-name player to withdraw from the U.S. team, joining MVP Stephen Curry, Russell Westbrook, Chris Paul, James Harden and others.
The 2016 U.S. team will miss James’ leadership and his stats as he ranks as the career leader in points and assists in the Olympics.
Meanwhile, USA Basketball is holding a spot for Cavs point guard Kyrie Irving.
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