If you read sports headlines, you know that the biggest news of the month is just how many athletes have been testing positive for coronavirus after restarting their training. But even those of us who haven’t really missed watching grown men play with balls can appreciate one story to come out of all this: Avery Bradley, a guard for the Los Angeles Lakers, has decided to choose the health of his son over the money and glory of playing basketball this summer.
To recap, for the fellow non-sports fans out there, the NBA is still planning to resume games on July 30, in an “Orlando bubble” of players and their families, despite the fact that COVID-19 cases are on the rise in Florida. That bubble doesn’t seem safe enough to Bradley, whose oldest son, Liam, 6, has a history of respiratory illness, according to ESPN.
“As committed to my Lakers teammates and the organization as I am, I ultimately play basketball for my family,” Bradley said, according to 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.”
No one would bat an eyelash if a mother said she’d be taking time off of work to protect her child from exposure to an illness, but it’s unusual to see a prominent male athlete take such a stand. Unsurprisingly, some fans were upset by the news, but for the most part, Twitter is full of people defending his decision.
According to ESPN, Liam would likely not have passed the medical screening to be allowed into the Orlando bubble. Before revealing this reasoning, Bradley and Brooklyn Nets player Kyrie Irving have also reportedly voiced concern that resuming the season in this way was intended to be a distraction from the fight for racial justice.
It’s unclear whether Bradley will lose money by sitting out, but he’s choosing to use his break for the greater good.
“As promised also, I will use this time away to focus on the formation of projects to help strengthen my communities,” he said.
Is Bradley really the only player out of 22 teams to have a child at risk for COVID-19? Other players are sitting out for other reasons, but we’d like to see more men feel free to put their families first.
While you’re looking to protect your own children, you can shop for these kids face masks on Amazon.
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