March 04, 2015

PARIS (AP) Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah is unlikely to play for France at the European Championship in September.

Noah is going through a difficult season after surgery on his left knee in the offseason, and told L'Equipe newspaper on Wednesday he is focusing on his NBA career.

The 30-year-old Noah, whose only appearance with France at a major tournament was at the 2011 EuroBasket, said ''the French team is a great experience, but it has never been my priority.''

France technical director Patrick Beesley asked Noah to decide on his availability for the Sept. 5-20 tournament before the end of March, and made clear he won't be selected for the Rio de Janeiro Olympics if he skips the EuroBasket.

Noah is contracted to the Bulls through the 2015-16 season.

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