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Blazers’ Kent Bazemore promises to look out for Anfernee Simons after giving him jersey No. 24

Kent Bazemore, Anfernee Simons

Kent Bazemore, now of the Portland Trail Blazers, promised to look out for Anfernee Simons after the second-year man allowed him to take jersey no. 24.

Simons, who wore no. 24 before Bazemore was sent from the Atlanta Hawks to the Trail Blazers, changed to no. 1 after the trade was sealed. Per Jamie Hudson of NBC Sports, the two did not talk about the matter so Bazemore had no idea how Simons went about with the change. Despite this, Bazemore is looking to repay Simons’ back.

“I’m going to take care of him for that,” Bazemore said of Simons.

“Big props to that. I’m going to be looking out for him all season,” Bazemore added.

Bazemore quipped that he had way before basketball legend Kobe Bryant wore it. To recall, Bryant switched jersey numbers from 8 to 24 in 2006. For the Laker legend, the 24 was his jersey no. back in high school before switching to 33. Switching numbers signified a departure from the past, a mark of growth. For Bazemore, who’s heading to his eighth year in the league, the reasons are more personal.

“I’ve had that number since I was 12 or 13 years old, so it’s been with me for a very long time. It means a lot to me. You know, a 24-second shot clock, 24-hours in a day, and my mom and me are 24 years apart, so there’s a lot that goes into,” Bazemore said.

It was a grand gesture by Simons.

Even before they shared the court together, they’re already developing respect for one another which will definitely go a long way.