Report: RJ Barrett Won't Play in FIBA World Cup Due to Injury

By WFAN Sports Radio 101.9 FM/66AM New York

New York Knicks rookie RJ Barrett is reportedly skipping the 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup.

According to The Athletic's Shams Charania, Barrett won't play for Team Canada in the tournament due to "management of a mild calf strain", an injury he sustained during the Knicks' Summer League campaign, where he averaged 15.4 points, 8.6 rebounds and 4.2 assists.

New York Knicks No. 3 pick RJ Barrett will not play for Canada in the FIBA World Cup due to management of a mild calf strain sustained during Las Vegas summer league, sources told @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium.

— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) August 1, 2019

The Knicks' third-overall pick will still participate in Canada's training camp and activities, per Charania. Barrett's father, Rowan, serves as the general manager for the Canadian national team. 

Barrett excelled at the international level throughout his rising career. He led Canada past the tournament-favorite USA at the FIBA U19 World Cup, ultimately resulting in the country's first gold medal at an international event. In June 2018, Barrett scored 16 points as he made his national team debut at the Pacific Rim Classic.

Canada last participated in the tournament in 2010, where the team finished in 22nd place. With a roster highlighted by the additions of Denver's Jamal Murray and Sacramento's Cory Joseph, the Canadians were poised to contend for the championship.

The injury is the last bit of information Knicks fans hoped to hear this summer. New York missed the playoffs for the sixth consecutive season, finishing with a disappointing 17-65 record.