National teams wait on NBA stars for Olympic qualifier games


Switzerland — With the NBA playoffs starting Saturday, are watching and waiting to get star back for last-minute qualification games to the Tokyo Olympics.

The 11,000-athlete lineup for the Olympics will not be complete until four men’s qualifying tournaments — in Canada, Croatia, Lithuania and Serbia, each with one ticket to Tokyo — are played from June 29-July 4.

So if the Milwaukee Bucks are eliminated before the Eastern Conference Finals, then Giannis Antetokounmpo could play in Victoria, Canada, for the Greece coached by Rick Pitino.

Nikola Jokić can join his Serbia teammates at home in Belgrade if the Denver Nuggets don’t go all the way, and Slovenia will want to get Luka Dončić to Kaunas in Lithuania, if the Dallas Mavericks are eliminated.

The extra days allowed beyond the official June 29 qualifying for other Tokyo Olympics were key for ’s world governing body. (Associated Press)

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