Lakers guard Avery Bradley admits having had hard feelings for Clippers after trade
LOS ANGELES – The NBA preseason is officially in the books for the Los Angeles Lakers with the season-opening showdown with the L.A. Clippers set to take place on Tuesday at the Staples Center. Although everyone on the squad is looking forward to getting the season underway, one Lakers newcomer has something to prove heading into this matchup of division rivals.
Avery Bradley’s stint with the Clippers came to an end in disappointing fashion with the veteran guard getting traded to the Memphis Grizzlies ahead of the NBA trade deadline earlier this year. Bradley wasn’t happy about the trade as he admitted on Monday that there were some hard feelings toward the Clippers organization after he was sent packing to the lowly Grizzlies back on Feb. 7, but things have changed.
“I did at first, but now I’m just worried about just getting out there and getting our first W and moving on to the next game,” Bradley said on if he has hard feelings toward the Clippers. “I think it’s our end goal. Our end goal is to win the championship, and not just worry about the Clippers. That’s what I’m focused on. I’m focused on getting better each and every day as a team and as an individual.”
There’s a good chance Bradley won’t have to wait long to get on the floor against his former team. Head coach Frank Vogel has been preaching defense ever since he took the Lakers’ job, and Bradley has turned some heads on the practice floor as well as in games during the preseason. The former Clipper could be in the starting lineup on Tuesday night alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis.
Along with potentially being a starter to start the season for this title-contending team, Bradley is determined to prove he’s still one of the best defensive players in the NBA.
“In the West, we’re going up against some of the best guards in the NBA each and every night,” Bradley said. “I’ll be able to show everyone that I’m one of the best on-guard defenders in the NBA. If not the best.”
If Bradley can prove to be the defensive force he believes he can be; the Lakers stand to be one of the most well-rounded teams in the NBA this season. Vogel’s squad is already considered to be a top-tier team coming into the 2019-20 campaign with Davis and James leading the way, but a defensive boost in the backcourt with Bradley and Danny Green will help make the case that this team is without a doubt the best in the league to begin the season.