Sacramento Kings: Did De’Aaron Fox Leave Team USA For Kobe’s Camp?

PARIS, FRANCE - OCTOBER 21: Kobe Bryant formerly of the Los Angeles Lakers attends the opening of the the renovated Gymnase Jean-Jaurès now called Gymnase Le Quartier on October 21, 2017 in Paris, France. (Photo by Catherine Steenkeste/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - OCTOBER 21: Kobe Bryant formerly of the Los Angeles Lakers attends the opening of the the renovated Gymnase Jean-Jaurès now called Gymnase Le Quartier on October 21, 2017 in Paris, France. (Photo by Catherine Steenkeste/Getty Images) /
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We may have some clarity as to why De’Aaron Fox withdrew from Team USA in mid-August.

As originally reported by Marc Stein of the New York Times, Kobe Bryant held an invite-only camp last month for some of the biggest names in the NBA. Attendees included Kawhi Leonard, Kyrie Irving, and Paul George among many others. Some of those others included Sacramento Kings backcourt mates De’Aaron Fox and Buddy Hield.

According to a report by The Athletic, the workouts were grueling and lasted from 7 am until well in to the afternoon. The sessions also included off-court work on the whiteboard, discussions of half-court schemes and scenarios. There was even some light scrimmaging.

Fox and Hield’s participation in the camp is great news for the Kings. Not only were both of players able to work on and hone their individual skills, but were also together for x’s and o’s tutelage from one of the greatest players in NBA history. They were surely able to discuss how they would translate their new knowledge in to Sacramento’s game plan.

In The Athletic’s piece, it was reported that Hield was “an absolute sponge” who wanted to hear everything that Bryant had to say. This is encouraging from a guy who plays the same position that Bryant did and is looking to take yet another leap this season. It was not reported how much the camp focused on defense, but if there was, we can hope that Hield was a sponge there, too.

The camp was held on August 26th and 27th, but the sessions were kept under wraps for nearly a month. The rules that were enforced were: No guests. No cameras. No social media. No sponsors. No fluff. Just hoops.

But the revealing of the camp may bring clarity to the Team USA situation.

Fox was the subject of scrutiny when he backed out of his commitment to Team USA just before they took off for the FIBA World Cup. The reason for his departure has been speculated for over a month, and the decision to attend Kobe’s camp may have something to do with it. The camp might not have been the sole or main reason for Fox’s choice, though it likely contributed.

Next. Who Will Be Attending Training Camp?. dark

The Sacramento Kings first preseason game will be held in India on October 4th. Keep an eye out for new synergy and chemistry between the starting backcourt.