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Dion Waiters Eligible for Title Ring Regardless of Lakers-Heat NBA Finals Result

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistSeptember 29, 2020

Los Angeles Lakers' Dion Waiters (18) passes around Toronto Raptors' Marc Gasol (33) during the second half of an NBA basketball game Saturday, Aug. 1, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis, Pool)
Ashley Landis/Associated Press

Los Angeles Lakers guard Dion Waiters is in a win-win situation in the NBA Finals.

While Waiters currently plays for the Lakers, he started the season as a member of the Miami Heat. As a result, he is eligible to receive a championship ring regardless of which team wins:

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

Dion will be able to receive a championship ring regardless of who wins this year's Finals 😅 Waiters started the season with Miami and is eligible for a ring at the Heat’s discretion if L.A. loses https://t.co/EF0tMseEgF

Awarding Waiters a ring would be at the Heat's discretion should they beat the Lakers in the Finals, though, meaning they could decide against it.

Waiters appeared in only three games for Miami this season and was suspended multiple times for conduct detrimental to the team before he was traded to the Memphis Grizzlies.

Waiters caught on with the Lakers after the Grizzlies released him. He appeared in seven regular-season games, averaging 11.9 points, 2.4 assists and 1.9 rebounds. Overall, Waiters averaged 11.1 points, 2.4 rebounds and 2.0 assists in 10 games split between the Heat and Lakers.

He has also appeared in five playoff games, averaging 2.0 points per game in just 7.6 minutes per contest.

The 2012 No. 4 overall draft pick out of Syracuse isn't a big part of the Lakers' rotation when healthy, and he is currently nursing a groin injury that has him listed as day-to-day.

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Waiters was more of a featured player earlier in his career. He had a career-high 15.9 points per game in 2013-14 with the Cleveland Cavaliers and later 15.8 points per game with the Heat in 2016-17, but the 28-year-old has settled into a reserve role with the Lakers.

He may not be a huge deciding factor in the 2020 NBA Finals, but his situation is one of the most intriguing storylines of the series.

Waiters and the Lakers will face the Heat in Game 1 of the 2020 NBA Finals on Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET.

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