Austin Rivers has doubled down on his take about the Charlotte Hornets' “troubled youth” around franchise cornerstone LaMelo Ball. Responding to Miles Bridges' fiery post on SnapChat implicitly criticizing him, the veteran guard took to Twitter imploring the accused domestic abuser to go back to showing “high character.”
“Nah this can’t be about me 😂. I’ve gotten good minutes on every team I have played on, with exception of last year. Situation matters..and I stand by what I said about Melo..straight up! He needs pieces around him with high character. Stop worrying about me and go be one again🤫”
Bridges missed the entirety of last season after being accused of assaulting his then-girlfriend in front of their children. The alleged incident took place in May 2022 and was documented by Bridges' accuser on social media. He pleaded guilty to one felony count of injuring a child's parent last November, the other two felony counts against Bridges dismissed as part of the plea agreement. The NBA finally hit Bridges with a suspension in April; he'll be sidelined for the first 10 games of 2023-24 as a result.
The ongoing rift between Rivers and Bridges began when the former criticized Charlotte's front office for surrounding Ball with “troubled youth.” Though Rivers didn't mention Bridges, rookie Brandon Miller or Kai Jones by name, individual off-court troubles make it clear they are the players he was referencing.
Miller provided the gun that was then used to murder a young mother on the Alabama campus last fall. Jones, who's since shot down concerns about his mental and physical state, had the NBA world in a frenzy during a recent livestream, calling out his teammates' perceived weaknesses amid an at times incoherent diatribe about how the Hornets wouldn't trade him.
Rivers, 31, spent 2022-23 with the Minnesota Timberwolves, appearing in 52 games. He remains unsigned as teams across the league open training camp in the next two weeks.