Orlando Magic forward Maurice Harkless has chosen not to play for Puerto Rico’s national basketball team this summer, choosing instead to concentrate on getting ready for the 2014-15 NBA season.
Harkless, whose maternal grandfather is from Puerto Rico, was supposed to represent the commonwealth in the FIBA World Cup in Spain beginning Aug. 30.
"He wants to focus on the Magic and getting ready for his most important season to date," Harkless’ agent, Happy Walters, told the Orlando Sentinel.
The 21-year-old Harkless played in 80 of 82 games during his second season with the Magic, including 41 starts. Although his scoring average went down to 7.4 points a game compared to 8.2 points as a rookie, he increased his shooting percentages from the free-throw line and beyond the 3-point arc.
Two of Harkless’ Magic teammates, guard Victor Oladipo and forward Tobias Harris, are currently training with the U.S. national team in Las Vegas.