Anadolu Efes Istanbul center Tibor Pleiss confirmed that won't make his anticipated return to the German national team.

In May, BasketNews reported that Pleiss is expected to wear German NT jersey for the first time since 2016. However, a thigh injury prevented the 32-year-old from making his return to the team.

"I suffered the injury in the [Turkish] Cup game," Pleiss revealed in the Talkin' Basketball podcast. "I still became an MVP, and I'm happy about it. Unfortunately, I already had some minor injuries in that game and suffered a thigh one."

"For the rest of the season, which was very successful, I had to take the painkillers. However, I've noticed that these painkillers aren't very good for the body, but sometimes you just can't play without them," Pleiss added.

The German forward also said that after the season, there was some hope of him playing in the EuroBasket, but eventually, he was ruled out.

"I met with Gordon Herbert [German NT head coach], and we agreed to see how the injury will develop over the summer to see whether I could make it [into EuroBasket]. Unfortunately, it wasn't the case.

I returned from Egypt and started training right away because I wanted to stay fit and hopefully play in the EuroBasket. Later, I had an MRI in Cologne and sat with the doctors. 

Unfortunately, I was told that it wouldn't make much sense for me to play [in EuroBasket] because I would probably need to continue taking painkillers. Also, I wouldn't be ready 100%, and I'm not a youngster, either," Pleiss continued on the Talkin' Basketball podcast.

Pleiss admitted that it was a tough choice as he wanted to represent Germany in the upcoming European tournament.

"Of course, my heart started to bleed right away. I was looking forward to it, and it was a moment I didn't want to miss. I really wanted to play, but my body said it's better if I take a step back, so I could play for a few years more," Pleiss concluded.

As BasketNews reported on Saturday, Pleiss agreed to a contract extension with Anadolu Efes.

Last season, the 2.21-meter center averaged 9.6 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 11.2 PIR in 40 EuroLeague games.

In the victorious final against Real Madrid, Pleiss played 31 minutes and finished the game with 19 points (7/8 2PT, 1/2 3PT, 2/2 FT), 7 rebounds, 1 steal, 2 blocks, 1 turnover, and 24 PIR.

Pleiss joined Efes in the summer of 2018 and has won two EuroLeague titles, two Turkish championships, and one Turkish Cup since then. He was named Turkish Cup Final MVP last season.

Full Germany 16-player roster:

  • Robin Benzing
  • Niels Giffey
  • Justus Hollatz
  • David Kramer
  • Leon Kratzer
  • Maodo Lo
  • Andreas Obst
  • Kenneth Ogbe
  • Dennis Schroder
  • Christian Sengfelder
  • Daniel Theis
  • Johannes Thiemann
  • Johannes Voigtmann
  • Franz Wagner
  • Moritz Wagner
  • Jonas Wohlfarth-Bottermann
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