Today's Paper

Avery Bradley has now experienced Heat as fan, foe, free agent

As Avery Bradley watched the 2020 NBA Finals — “as a fan,” he said — he found himself in the unique position of witnessing his past, present and future.

During the regular season, he had helped lead the Los Angeles Lakers to the Western Conference’s best regular-season record. During the playoffs, he took in the action from his 比特币交易价格行情home, bypassing the Disney World quarantine bubble due to COVID-19 concerns. And then, during the championship series, he saw the Lakers defeat a Miami Heat team he would join weeks later.


Now a member of the Heat, on a two-year contract signed at the outset of last week’s free-agency period, Bradley spoke of his whirlwind.

“I was watching the game as a fan. Obviously, I was going for my team,” he said of the Lakers in the Finals. “But you still admire a lot of the guys that are playing. You’re out of the bubble, but the Miami Heat definitely, they stood out for me and I really enjoyed watching Bam play and watching Jimmy play. I mean the entire team.”


As in Bam Adebayo. As in Jimmy Butler. As in those he will join in Heat training camp next week.

See all newsletters.

Turns out, Heat envy was a thing for Bradley dating to his tenure with the Boston Celtics, when Erik Spoelstra’s Big Three rendition of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh provided such compelling competition.

“I think he’s absolutely special, one of the coaches that I’ve admired throughout these years, simply because of the mixture of their culture, and his style of coaching, I think, is extremely unique,” he said of Spoelstra. “He gets the most out of every single player on the court. I feel like the players get better throughout the year, which I think, that’s a great talent to have as a coach. It says a lot about the head coach and his coaching staff, to have players that improve throughout the season.

“I felt like watching Miami play this year, Tyler [Herro] and [Kendrick] Nunn, Duncan Robinson, like they improved throughout the season. I think that’s a credit to the coaching staff, giving them confidence and opportunities to go out there and just play their game and bring their talents every single night. Everyone played for one another. I think that’s just a special gift to have as a coach. I’m so happy I get the opportunity now to finally play for him.”

Bradley offered his thoughts ahead of Thanksgiving, turning 30 on Thursday. He said it’s a birthday that offers perspective.

“It means a lot to me,” he said of the milepost. “Throughout my career, I’ve had a lot of ups and downs, losing both parents, being on a lot of teams.

“Going into my 11th season is honestly a blessing. I’m not going to take it for granted at all. That’s why I know this year is going to be good for me, because I’m honestly going to leave everything I have right on the floor every single night.”