It was an exciting week for former Gators in the NBA with many holding multiple headlines throughout.
A total of 45 former Gators were on 24 NFL teams by the end of the 2018 regular season.
With Washington Wizards star guard John Wall sidelined due to a heel injury, Bradley Beal has shined, averaging 27 points to go along with 5.8 rebounds and 5.8 assists per game in Wall’s absence. Beal, who has worn No. 3 his entire NBA career, recently joined Dwyane Wade’s #OneLastDance Tour when he swapped jerseys with his “idol” after what may be the final time the two meet.
“He’s part of the reason I wear No. 3,” Beal said to reporters following the game. “I basically called him my idol and ‘thank you,’. . . because ‘you paved the way for me, you paved the way for a lot us in today’s game.”
Though Beal and company are 3-2 since Wall’s season-ending injury, they continue to struggle sitting eight games under .500 for the season.
Udonis Haslem also made headlines around Miami as he announced via Twitter that he will retire after the season, through a post titled “End of the Road for Udonis Haslem.” Many have showed support to the 16-year veteran who has played his entire career with the Heat. Undrafted in 2002, Haslem was given a chance by the Heat organization and slowly became a hometown hero and centerpiece of the Heat culture for almost two decades. Though Haslem has played in just three games this season, his role with the Heat in recent years has focused primarily on leadership and being a vocal presence for the younger guys on the team.
Chandler Parsons hasn’t been as fortunate as Haslem in regards to playing for one city. He had stints in Houston and Dallas, and now he and the Memphis Grizzlies agreed to part ways earlier this week after a disagreement between both sides about a possible G League assignment peaked. Parsons said he is “disappointed” to leave Memphis but is hopeful for his future in the league and is “ready to play.”
Parsons is still owed $38 million from his four-year, $94 million maximum contract signed in 2016, including $25.1 million for the 2019-2020 season. Despite this, the Grizzlies are confident they can trade him without including a first-round draft pick. Parsons was limited to just 73 games during his time in Memphis primarily due to knee injuries that cut both of his seasons short. He averaged seven points in 19.3 minutes per game with the Grizzlies.
Follow Victor Prieto on Twitter @victorprieto_11 and contact him at [email protected].