Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press
The Los Angeles Lakers have pledged to offer guard Avery Bradley a ring if they win the 2020 NBA Finals despite his decision to not join them for the season’s resumption in Orlando, according to Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports.
Bradley told Haynes that he is unsure whether he will accept the gesture.
“[General manager] Rob Pelinka made me aware of the Lakers offering me a ring if they win the championship. It’s a very kind gesture on their part. … Will I accept the ring? I’m neither here nor there about it. I am 10 years in this league. The physical possession of a ring doesn’t make me feel like more or less of a person. I play basketball strictly for enjoyment and to add to the support of my family. Supporting them is exactly what I’m doing right now.”
Bradley, who started 44 games for the Lakers this season, cited family reasons for his decision to not partake in the rest of the season. He told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski that concern over his six-year-old son, who has a history of respiratory illnesses, played a major factor in his decision.
“As committed to my Lakers teammates and the organization as I am, I ultimately play basketball for my family,” Bradley said. “And so, at a time like this, I can’t imagine making any decision that might put my family’s health and well-being at even the slightest risk.”
Bradley added he plans on also focusing on social justice causes during the downtime. He told Haynes he has not struggled with his decision.
The Lakers signed JR Smith to replace Bradley on their roster for seeding games and the 2020 postseason. Smith has not appeared in an NBA game since November 2018.
Bradley has a $5 million player option for the 2020-21 season.