Anthony Davis will wear his own name on the back of his jersey when the Los Angeles Lakers return to action on July 30.
Davis confirmed his decision on Sunday in a conference call from Orlando, where the Western Conference-leading Lakers are beginning team workouts.
Davis and LeBron James both declined to choose a social justice message to replace their names on the back of their jerseys during the NBA restart.
Davis, a seven-time NBA All-Star, said he was “torn between” choosing from among the 29 approved messages and sticking with his name.
“For me, I think the name ‘Davis’ is something I try to represent every time I step on the floor,” he said. “I just think my last name is something that’s very important to me, and also social justice as well.
“But [I am] just holding my family name and representing the name on the back to go through this process … and people who have been with me through my entire career to help me get to this point, while still kind of bringing up things that we can do for social injustice.”
James said he decided to forgo a social justice message because the available options didn’t “resonate” for him or his particular feelings about the movement. James would have liked to choose his own slogan, but wasn’t angry that it wasn’t allowed.
Both James and Davis have been outspoken about social justice causes in the past, although the younger Davis is less vocal than James.
The Lakers will be without veteran point guard Rajon Rondo when they resume their season. Late on Sunday, ESPN’s Dave McMenamin and Malika Andrews were first to report that guard Rondo suffered a ‘significant’ hand injury during practice.
Lakers guard Rajon Rondo suffered a “significant” hand injury during practice on Sunday evening, sources told me and @malika_andrews. Rondo, 34, underwent medical evaluation on his hand and thumb, sources said, and the severity of the injury should be known Monday morning
— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) July 13, 2020
The Lakers subsequently announced Rondo had fractured his right thumb and is expected to miss six to eight weeks following surgery, which will take place later in the week.
In 48 games this season, mostly off the bench, Rondo has averaged 7.1 points, 5.0 assists and 3.0 rebounds.