The Los Angeles Lakers signed a free agency for the second time on Tuesday, when they agreed on a deal with 12-year-old striker Jared Dudley.
Dudley may not have been the number one free agency for many Lakers fans. According to Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times, he was in demand by several free agency teams, including Detroit Pistons and Brooklyn Nets.
During an interview on ESPN's "The Woj Pod", Dudley Adrian Wojnarowski explained why he opted to select Los Angeles over other teams and rejected the idea that gamers do not want to play for the Lakers:
" People want to play for the Lakers. You may hear that people do not want stars and the like. But for one, it's LA, it's a team that has the best tradition in all professional sports when it comes to their championships and what they've achieved.
Dudley admitted he was considering returning to Brooklyn, where he became a fan favorite because of his bouts with Ben Simmons in the postseason, but said he saw an opportunity with LeBron James and Anthony Davis for one Los Angeles Championships:
"… There was no team that stood apart from Brooklyn and the Lakers, this was something I wanted to attend. I earned my money. I was successful in serving young teams, but I have not had a run that is a champion candidate before the season starts. That's one thing I miss and I can do, basically at home? I mean San Diego, it's Laker Nation out there, so this is my home, even though I'm from San Diego.
Dudley also said that the nets did not give him a priority in the free hand, causing him to band together with James, an opportunity he was not to miss when he was 33 years old:
"But I vote for myself still LeBron. Everyone knows that if he has the right pieces, it will go through him. If we add Anthony Davis, we'll see what happens to Kawhi, but if the deal comes off, I could not do without it later in my career. For Dudley, it sounds like this summer was the first time he had free time and decided to return to Southern California, where the best fans of the NBA live NBA, they will tell you that Laker fans the dominate opposing arenas. Your fans are by far the most loyal. Maybe it's history or winning, but they could play in Boston, they could play in Milwaukee, you'll hear Laker fans in the building. To hear that and see their passion, my social media explodes … They long for a chance to compete at the highest level. You can not win or lose in this league. You have signed up for your rookie contract for five or six years, after which each player earns the most money, and after you've reached your eleventh or twelfth year of age, you can choose.
"Well, here's my chance and I'll take the Lakers. Overall, Dudley sounds quite happy that he will play in Los Angeles next season.
Good luck, Duds.
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