This week a few of the Los Angeles Lakers’ new signees were made available for conference calls with the media. On Thursday, one of those new signees to give his first thoughts since signing with the team was Avery Bradley.
Bradley spent last year on two teams, as he was traded midseason from the Los Angeles Clippers to the Memphis Grizzlies. He has been dealing with a groin injury, however, that dates back longer than that to his time on the Detroit Pistons in the second half of the 2017-18 season. It was a nagging injury for him then, which carried over to his initial time at the end of that season with the Clippers where he missed the final 26 games of the 2017-18 season.
The good news is that he stated to the media during his conference call that he’s feeling much better (via Harrison Faigen/Silver Screen & Roll).
Bradley says he's finally "100 percent" recovered from his previous groin injury. He thinks the Lakers will be similar to the role he played his second season in Boston: Making cuts off of key players and focusing on defense.
— Harrison Faigen (@hmfaigen) July 12, 2019
In that aforementioned second season with the (dreaded) Boston Celtics, Avery Bradley averaged 7.6 PPG while shooting 40.7% from three (only on 0.8 attempts per game). That was in the 2011-12 season, when the “key players” he was referencing were Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Ray Allen.
Bradley has definitely been on the decline since his days with Boston, where he was a pretty formidable three-and-D player. That’s exactly the type of player that the Lakers lacked last season and the type of player they prioritized this season, going after Bradley, Danny Green, and Jared Dudley, among others.
He also stated that the games against the Clippers this season will be “circled on the calendar” for him. Among other topics discussed like LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and Rajon Rondo all being factors for his decision to join the Lakers, he made a pretty interesting anecdote regarding LeBron and Davis. In that anecdote, Bradley said the following (via Bill Oram/The Athletic).
"I’m looking at it as me playing with Paul Pierce and KG all over again."
— Bill Oram (@billoram) July 12, 2019
Yeah…Bradley might want to not compare LeBron James to Paul Pierce now that he’s a Laker. But we’ll forgive him if he can play to the level he played at during his Boston days.