Spurs' Parker out of worlds with broken finger

Updated: August 19, 2006, 1:33 AM ET
Associated Press

Tony Parker
Parker

SENDAI, Japan -- San Antonio Spurs guard Tony Parker will not play for France in the world championship after being diagnosed with a broken finger.

Parker, who injured his finger in an exhibition game against Brazil on Tuesday in China, had X-rays on his right index finger on Thursday in Japan and was informed Friday it's broken.

"He practiced Thursday with his finger bandaged and was in some pain," said Fabrice Canet, the team's press officer. "He wanted to stay but will return to the United States at the request of the Spurs."

Cliff Puchalski, a Spurs spokesman, said Friday the team would have no comment until team doctors could look at Parker's finger.

"It really is very disappointing and tough to swallow because I felt in great shape before I got hurt against Brazil," Parker said on the international basketball federation Web site. "If I play hurt, I may not be helping my team so I can't be selfish and decide I want to play just for myself.

"And of course I also have to consider what the San Antonio Spurs staff would say about it if I decided to go ahead and play. If I aggravated the injury I could be out for up to three months. I don't think that would be a good idea," he said.

France will open the world championship Saturday against Argentina. Parker will be replaced on the roster by Mamoutou Diarra, Canet said.

Center Fabricio Oberto said the absence of Parker may actually help France come together as a team at the world championships.

"Tony Parker is an important loss, but it could make them better in adversity," Oberto said Friday on the international basketball federation Web site. "France knows how to play without Parker. They are a powerful team with or without him."


Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press

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