Now that we know that Avery Bradley won’t be playing with the Los Angeles Lakers during the NBA reboot, eyes have been turned towards Dwight Howard. He’s the only other Lakers who was contemplating whether or not he wanted to play. While he has yet to make a public announcement, the team may have let the cat out of the bag in regards to his playing status.
The Lakers’ social media team posted a picture announcing the team is “back.” However, if you look closely, you can see that Bradley is absent from the picture but Howard is featured.
With preparation soon to begin for the reboot of the season, Howard will have to make a final decision. Him getting featured in a picture including all the other players isn’t necessarily a confirmation he’ll be playing, but it is a good sign.
Reports Have Indicated That Howard Wants to Play
If Howard does decide to play, it wouldn’t necessarily come as too much of a surprise. The Los Angeles Times has previously reported that he was still leaning towards playing despite his concerns. His role on the team isn’t as big as Bradley’s, but he’s still an important player off the bench.
This season represents the best chance that Howard has had at winning a title since he brought the Orlando Magic to the NBA Finals in 2009. He knows that and probably doesn’t want to miss out on the opportunity. There’s also the fact that many other players have pointed out that playing games could be a very effective way of promoting social activism. At this point, it seems that he’ll most likely end up playing.
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Danny Green Talks About Bubble
While there’s excitement over the NBA return, sacrifices will be made. Even commissioner Adam Silver admitted that it’s “far from” an ideal setup. Players are going to have to stay in a bubble throughout the duration of the season. Lakers veteran Danny Green thinks that could be a problem.
“I think the biggest concern for guys is their families,” Green said, via CBS. “And that is the biggest concern about the bubble. Not being able to see their families for two months or having to visit your friends, and being locked in this place without having any interactions with our outside world.”
He doesn’t sound too confident that every player will follow the rules.
“So we’ll see how long it lasts. Hopefully, no rules are broken.”
Green further explained why being in the bubble might cause issues.
“Some guy may get a little claustrophobic or homesick or just have that human connection of getting outside and being with their friends and families,” Green said. “I think that is probably the biggest task of staying in the bubble and keeping guys focused on the bubble.”
A team like the Lakers has a lot of veteran leadership and a goal of winning a title. However, not every team playing is going to have such lofty expectations. It will be interesting to see how younger players on teams that don’t have a realistic shot at the title react to the situation.