Lakers Rumors: Dwight Howard Plans to Play; Avery Bradley Uncertain on Restart

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJune 17, 2020

Los Angeles Lakers center Dwight Howard (39) in the second half overtime of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2020, in Denver. The Lakers won 120-116 in overtime. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
David Zalubowski/Associated Press

Although Dwight Howard and Avery Bradley have expressed concern about the NBA restarting its season, there is belief around the Los Angeles Lakers that Howard intends to play, according to Tania Ganguli and Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times.

It's reportedly unclear whether Bradley will return.

According to Shams Charania of Stadium and The Athletic, any player can decide not to participate in the resumed season in Orlando without discipline, but they must notify teams by June 24.

Both Howard and Bradley have discussed players sitting out as to not distract from the ongoing movement against racial injustice, an idea first brought forth by Kyrie Irving, per ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.

Howard provided his thoughts in a statement:

Bradley joined Irving in starting a player coalition that has voiced concerns about the league coming back. He noted the importance of staying active in protests.

Video Play Button
Videos you might like

The 29-year-old said, via Wojnarowski and Malika Andrews of ESPN: 

"Regardless of how much media coverage will be received, talking and raising awareness about social injustice isn't enough. Are we that self-centered to believe no one in the world is aware of racism right now? That, as athletes, we solve the real issues by using our platforms to speak?

"We don't need to say more. We need to find a way to achieve more. Protesting during an anthem, wearing T-shirts is great, but we need to see real actions being put in to the works."

The two players could play key roles for the Lakers, a team currently considered the favorite to win the title by Caesars Palace.

Bradley has started 44 of his 49 games this season, while Howard ranks sixth on the team in minutes. They've combined to average 16.1 points per game in 2019-20.

Losing one or two key rotational players could be a significant loss for Los Angeles as it tries to bring home a championship.