Still recovering, Nene unable to help Brazil in Olympic qualifying

Updated: June 7, 2008, 1:42 PM ET
Associated Press

SAO PAULO, Brazil -- Denver Nuggets forward Nene will not play for Brazil in Olympic qualifying next month.

Nuggets team doctor Steven Traina sent a letter Friday to the Brazilian Basketball Confederation, explaining Nene required more time to recover after treatment for testicular cancer and other injuries.

"This has been a difficult season for me," Nene said. "Not only on the technical side, but the emotional as well."

Nene's absence is another blow to the Brazilians, who already are without injured Cleveland Cavaliers forward Anderson Varejao. Varejao twisted his left ankle and tweaked his quadriceps during the NBA Eastern Conference semifinals series loss to the Boston Celtics.

Brazil had hoped to have Nene and Varejao for the Olympic qualifying tournament next month in Athens, Greece. Brazil has not qualified for the Olympics in basketball since 1996.

Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press