Kamloops' Olynyk opts to play for Canada in Olympic qualifying bid

Training camp will take place from June 16 to June 24, opening in Tampa, Fla., before moving to Victoria ahead of the start of the tournament there.

Kelly Olynyk of Kamloops will be among the players at training camp as the Canadian Senior Men’s National attempts to quality for the Olympic Summer Games in Tokyo.

Training camp will take place from June 16 to June 24, opening in Tampa, Fla., before moving to Victoria ahead of the start of the tournament.

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Canada is hosting one of four FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournaments at Victoria Memorial Arena in from June 29 to July 4. Fans in Canada can catch all the action live on CBC across its various platforms, both on television and online, as well as streamed on DAZN.

Olynyk, a South Kamloops secondary graduate who plays for the Houston Rockets of the NBA, is one of 21 players ton accept invitations to training camp.

Olynyk was traded to Houston from Miami this past season and put up some of the best numbers of his career. The 6-foot-11 centre is a free agent at the end of the season, with teams eligible to sign as of Aug. 5.

Earlier this month, Olynyk told KTW his free agency and the issues related to that — including insurance and staying healthy before signing with a team — would play a role in his decision to don the Maple Leaf.

The FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournaments feature the 16 best-placed non-qualified teams from the FIBA Basketball World Cup and two highest-ranked countries per region in the FIBA world rankings.

Canada is in Group A for the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament and will face Greece on June 29 and China on June 30 in the group phase, while Uruguay, Czech Republic and Turkey have been drawn into Group B for the Victoria FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament. Click here for a full tournament schedule.

Each team will play the other two teams in its own group (two games for each team).  The top two teams in each group will advance to the semifinals.  The two semi-final winners will advance to the final, with the winner qualifying for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

The winner of the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Victoria has drawn Group A for the group phase of the Olympics and will face Iran, France and USA.

In addition to Canada, Croatia, Lithuania and Serbia (Belgrade) will also host FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournaments.

Canada is currently ranked 21st in the FIBA world rankings.

© Kamloops This Week



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