The NBA has selected 22 teams to continue the season in Orlando, Florida, United States. However, with the conditions of this pandemic, the NBA also gives concessions to players who are unwilling to continue the season. Later, the 22 teams that continued the season were allowed to replace absent players with free players.
Some time after this decision, Kyrie Irving reportedly invited many NBA players to not have to continue the season. Not because of the danger factor of the corona virus, Irving invited players to focus more on efforts to struggle for racial justice in the United States. Together with Irving, Avery Bradley and Lou Williams reportedly cuddled for not continuing the season, but their decision was not final. Irving himself was certainly absent for the rest of the season because of the injury he suffered.
The three players above caused speculation, Washington Wizards forward, Davis Bertans, immediately realized. Reported by ESPN , Bertans became the first player to make sure he did not continue the season at Orlando despite being injured. Through his agent, Bertans revealed that the reason for his withdrawal was related to his status as an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season.
“When the NBA announced that players could not take part in Orlando and would not face high consequences going forward and only lost one percent of the salary per game spent, we immediately discussed this,” Arturs Kalnitis, Bertans agent, told HoopsHype .
“Bertans will get one of the biggest contracts of his career at the break of the season. So, we will not risk to continue the season and have the opportunity to get injured. This is not a very difficult decision. If the Wizards are ranked fifth or sixth, maybe the story is different.
Do not stop there, Kalnitis also mentioned that Bertans had consulted his decision with all relevant parties, Wizards management and also the players. All of them gave positive responses and were very supportive of all the choices he made.
“The Wizards knew Bertans’ decision several days before appearing public. Bertans has also told his team-mates. They all provide extraordinary support for the decision. Tommy Sheppard, general manager of Wizards, is the best. He has a special relationship with Bertans and they support each other, “he concluded.
Bertans has played 54 times this season with four of them being the main players. In minutes played, he went down for 29.3 minutes per game. The highest minutes of play throughout his career he paid with a contribution of 15.4 points, 4.5 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game. The main strength of Bertans is its tripoin accuracy which reaches 42.4 percent from an average of 8.7 experiments per game.
The 27-year-old player also has a history of severe injuries. While still playing in Europe for Partizan at 2012, he suffered an Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) injury in his right knee and kept him out for nine months. After recovering, he decided to join the Spanish club, Laboral Kutxa Baskonia in July 2014. Not until a year ago, precisely in March 2015, Bertans returned to the operating table because of an ACL injury again in the same place, his right knee.
Bertans is expected to lose US $ 520 thousand if the Wizards are unable to force the eighth ranked determination game. However, if the Wizards can advance to the playoffs, he is likely to lose more. Even so, the Wizards themselves plan to provide long-term contracts for Bertans at the break of the season. So, this decision is quite beneficial for both parties.