Reporting Tim Kephart
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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Miami Heat Superstar LeBron James has won two NBA MVP awards, two NBA Finals MVP awards, two NBA championships, and an Olympic gold medal in just the last three years. But, LeBron may be ready to hang up his Olympic jersey for good.
According to a report from Yahoo! Sports, James will not play for USA Basketball in the 2014 world championships in Spain and is not expected to play in the 2016 Olympics in Brazil. While the loss of James would be huge for Team USA, he has little left to prove on the international stage.
James has won two Olympic gold medals and a bronze medal in three Olympic appearances dating back to 2004. Still, Yahoo!’s report said that James could decide to play in at least the 2016 Olympics if he feels that he has the stamina to pull it off.
James will be over 30-years-old by the time the next Olympics rolls around and he’s been playing a lot of basketball in recent years. After taking part in the 2012 Olympics in London, James played in approximately 99 games that ended with the Heat’s second straight NBA championship.
LeBron’s decision on the Olympics won’t be watched nearly as closely as his 2014 free agency decision. James can opt-out of his current contract for a bigger payday and is expected to do that next July.
While most expect LeBron to stick with the Heat and let Pat Riley build another championship winner around him, other teams like the Los Angeles Lakers are expected to make a big push to try to get LeBron out of South Florida.
If the Heat three-peat next season, or at least get to the NBA Finals, it will likely help keep LeBron in Miami for at least another four years.