LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Los Angeles Lakers guard Avery Bradley will not be joining the team in Orlando when the league resumes its season next month.
The 29-year-old told ESPN on Tuesday that the main reason for doing so is because of the well-being of his 6-year-old son Liam, who has a history of struggling to recover from respiratory illnesses, making it unlikely he would have been medically cleared to enter the Orlando bubble with the family.
“As committed to my Lakers teammates and the organization as I am, I ultimately play basketball for my family,” Bradley told ESPN. “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. As promised also, I will use this time away to focus on the formation of projects to help strengthen my communities.”
Bradley, along with Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving, led the push among players to sit out the restart of the season in order to focus on the societal issues of racial inequality and police brutality currently being discussed.
Bradley started 44 games for the Lakers this season, emerging as a key two-way threat in helping the team to the Western Conference’s best record. With Bradley’s decision not to play, the Lakers will be able to sign a player to replace him. ESPN reports that former Cavaliers guard J.R. Smith has emerged as a leading candidate to do so.