LA Clippers’ Byron Mullens has made it clear that he does still intend to pull on a Great Britain jersey in the future, in the same week Portland’s Joel Freeland made similar comments after missing out on Eurobasket this summer to concentrate on adjusting to the NBA.
The 24-year-old did not play a part in the London Olympics team due to a toe injury, and also made the decision not to play this past summer at Eurobasket, in order to celebrate his son’s first birthday.
It was clear, just before Eurobasket, that fatherhood and his family was a main priority for Mullens.
Speaking with Clippers.com after a month after he signed, he said: “I never really had a father growing up so I don’t want to ever let him down, I’ll be there for him for everything. He’s really made me a better player. It’s not about playing for me or my wife anymore. I’m playing for his future and I’m trying to set him up not to let him want for anything really.”
However, speaking after the Clippers’ narrow 103-102 victory over the Sacramento Kings this weekend, the prospect of seeing the seven-footer play internationally is becoming more of a reality.
“Yeah there are definitely plans,” said the LA Clippers power forward, who is available to play for the GB team with his mother being from England.
His other dilemma was also where he was going to play for this season, and that was a big factor in not travelling over to join up with Joe Prunty’s squad to play in Slovenia.
“I really wanted to play but I felt I had to be there for his first birthday. Everything just didn’t pan out, I was still a free agent, and hadn’t signed with the Clippers yet, so it didn’t quite work out. However, I really am looking forward to playing in the near future.”
- The Clippers are in action again tonight, at 8:30pm UK time, against the Chicago Bulls, where another GB star Luol Deng will also take to court. You can catch it all on NBA League Pass – just visit watch.nba.com to find out how you can sign up and get access to EVERY NBA game.
- Image credit: NBAE/Getty Images