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Sport 'I have a decision to make': Bogut weighs up future after back injury

22:51  21 february  2020
22:51  21 february  2020 Source:   smh.com.au

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Andrew Bogut in a blue shirt: Andrew Bogut will weigh up his future after the Olympics. © Getty Images Andrew Bogut will weigh up his future after the Olympics.

Sydney Kings star Andrew Bogut has declared his basketball future is "up in the air" after struggling with a back injury in recent weeks, with the 35-year-old concerned his decorated career may be nearing an end.

Despite continued interest from the NBA, Bogut said he was seriously considering whether or not to have another stint in the United States. With his Kings contract expiring at the end of this season the upcoming NBL finals series could potentially also be his swansong in the Australian competition.

"There are only have a few [NBA] teams that I would probably look at more seriously out of the others," Bogut said. "It definitely will be a decision made on my body."

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The former NBA No.1 draft pick is at the pointy end of his second season with the Kings, having arrived in Sydney an NBA championship winner after triumphing with the Golden State Warriors in 2015.

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The Kings agreed to that on the condition that he return to honour the second year of his two-year contract. Whether he heads stateside again is unclear.

"It's just one of those things ... I'm 35 years old with a lot of basketball under my belt," Bogut said. "I've got to be smart with my body and there's some days where you can't train as hard as some of the younger fellows."

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As well as the NBL playoffs which start next week, Bogut is also preparing to play a vital role for the Boomers in the Olympics.

"Once things slow down, after the Olympics, I have a decision to make," he said. "It's just being smart and that's why the decision about going back to the NBA will be part of it. I want to be healthy for Tokyo."

Bogut made his return to the court after three games off with the Kings, resting his back ahead of the finals. The Kings, who led the table for the entire season, are the favourites to take out the league.

"Those first three games were the first three games of my NBL career that I've missed," Bogut said. "I don't like it, I'm pretty grumpy so I always try to rehab and do the extra stuff I can to try and get back on the court."

The Kings will take on Melbourne United next Saturday  in the first match of their three-game series, with the Sydney side claiming a home advantage as a result of their ladder position.

"I felt a little bit rusty [last week] with a few stupid turnovers but I just wanted to make sure I got through that week and played the game just to get any rust off," Bogut said. "If we consistently play at our average or above level, I think we've got a great chance of winning it.

"If we go rollercoaster and have bad spurts in quarters or even games, that's when we struggle a little bit."

The Kings claimed the 2020 minor premiership after beating the Illawarra Hawks 98-82 at Qudos Bank Arena in their last regular season encounter.

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