NBA

20 MLB & NBA Players Who Refuse To Return In 2020

Darren - July 15, 2020
NBA

20 MLB & NBA Players Who Refuse To Return In 2020

Darren - July 15, 2020
Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

16. Avery Bradley

Bradley is one of the most high-profile players to opt-out of the NBA restart. He also plays for the most high-profile team. The LA Lakers are definitely in contention for the championship this year but Bradley won’t be there with them in the playoffs. He played in 49 of their 63 games this season.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

However, Bradley says that his family is more important. He says that he will do what he has to. The Lakers will give him a ring if they win the championship. However, Bradley says he may not accept it.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

15. Nick Markakis

Markakis decided to opt out after a phone call with close friend and teammate Freddie Freeman. Freeman tested positive and explained the intensity of the symptoms to Markakis. In the end, the 36-year-old Atlanta Braves veteran decided it wasn’t worth playing.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

The outfielder says that Freeman’s description of his illness was eye-opening. Furthermore, Markakis doesn’t like the idea of playing without fans in attendance. Manager Brian Snitker says that he respects Markakis’s decision but it is a blow to their hopes of winning a third straight NL East title.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

14. Willie Cauley-Stein

The Dallas Mavericks will be without their seven-foot giant in Disney World. Cauley-Stein chose to opt-out because his wife is pregnant with the couple’s first child. He doesn’t want to risk putting her health in danger. You’ve got to say that is a good enough reason.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

Furthermore, with the NBA operating in a bubble, it would be weeks until he could see his newborn child. In sum, that’s why he just can’t take the time away. The Mavericks used him sparingly this season but he would definitely be a useful option in the postseason. Now they must plan to be without him.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

13. Ian Desmond

Desmond was the fourth MLB player to opt out of the new season. The Colorado Rockies star hit .255/.310/.479 with 20 home runs and 65 RBI across 482 plate appearances last year. He also has one more guaranteed year on his contract worth eight million dollars.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

However, he decided not to risk playing this year. With a pregnant wife and several young children, he wants to be there for his family. Furthermore, Desmond is biracial and wants to teach his children about civil rights and identity in the modern USA.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

12. Wilson Chandler

Chandler has had an awful season. First of all, the NBA suspended him for the first 25 games after testing positive for a performance-enhancing drug. In short, that’s why he has only played 35 games so far this season. But he won’t add to that total because he chose to opt out of the return.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

Chandler says it is because of his family. He doesn’t want to put them at risk by playing in a congested bubble at Disney World. Meanwhile, the 33-year-old averaged just 5.9 points and 4.1 rebounds per game this season. Will they really miss him?

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

11. David Price

LA Dodgers pitcher Price chose to opt out of the 2020 season after he cited health concerns. The former Cy Young Award winner arrived in LA from the Boston Red Sox in a five-player trade. The fathe of two will miss out on a $12 million salary this year because of his choice.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

The five-time All-Star was not the first baseball player to make this decision. Only time will tell if more join their ranks because the likes of Mike Trout have audible concerns about the rapidly increasing number of cases in the United States.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

10. DeMarcus Cousins

Cousins is currently recovering from an ACL injury. He doesn’t want to aggravate it by playing in Orlando. Even though the Lakers are chasing the NBA Championship, he doesn’t want to risk it and departs as a free agent. He sees this as the perfect time to get back to his physical peak.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

Cousins knows that he can’t come back too quickly from an ACL tear. That’s why he won’t play before a proper offseason when he can get his body up to speed. This may not be for the Lakers, however, it doesn’t matter in his eyes. It’s all about the money at this point in his career.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

9. DeAndre Jordan

Jordan is one of the most impactful players to opt out of the NBA restart. The Brooklyn Nets center helped his team win their last two games when he came in as a starter. Losing him is a blow because of the number of Nets stars already out.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

Jordan tested positive for the disease so medical staff doesn’t want him near the rest of the roster. This also means that Jarrett Allen will play more games. With big names like Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant, and Spencer Dinwiddie all absent for Florida, Brooklyn will have a tough time.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

8. Joe Ross

One of the three Washington Nationals to opt out of playing, Ross made the same decision as his brother Tyson. A right-handed pitcher with a chance of making the Nationals’ starting rotation, Ross would have made $550,000 if he chose to represent his team in Florida.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

Ross is a five-season MLB veteran. He underwent Tommy John surgery in 2017. Last season he played over 20 times for the Nationals but may not appear for them again. The Nationals won’t miss him that much after he decided to put his family over the chance of playing time.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

7. Spencer Dinwiddie

After testing positive for a second time, Dinwiddle will not play for the Brooklyn Nets in Florida next month. It’s a blow for the Nets because they are also Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and DeAndre Jordan. However, the medical staff and Dinwiddie agreed he should isolate from the squad.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

This leaves a big hole in the Nets’ offense because Dinwiddie is their second-highest scorer this season. He averaged over 20 points a game before the hiatus but won’t be adding to those numbers. Furthermore, Dinwiddie thought that he was clear to play so it’s even more disappointing.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

6. Ryan Zimmerman

Zimmerman is one of a trio of Washington Nationals’ stars who chose to opt out. The 35-year-old is a 15-year Nationals’ veteran. However, despite the longevity of his time in Washington, he still chose to put his family first. But he had a very good reason for that decision.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

First of all, his mother suffers from multiple sclerosis and is in the high-risk category. In short, Zimmerman does not want to endanger her life. He also has a three-month-old baby who he would not be able to see for weeks. Last season, he batted .257 with six home runs and 27 RBIs in 171 at-bats, including a dramatic home run in Game One of the World Series.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

5. Thabo Sefolosha

Sefolosha played in 41 games this season for Houston, averaging 2.2 points and 2.3 rebounds in 10.6 minutes. However, he chose to opt-out after several Rockets’ teammates fell ill during the current health crisis. The veteran says that he needs to think of his family, which is why he will not play in Orlando.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

He was a reserve player for the team this season, averaging 2.2 points and 2.3 rebounds in 10.6 minutes per game in 41 appearances. Sefolosha had seen more game time since January because of injuries but still only played in two of the Rockets’ past nine games. He may have played his last game in Texas.

Mandatory Credit: Bleacher Report

4. Tyson Ross

Veteran right-hander Ross chose to opt-out of the restart after the Giants surprisingly chose to release him. He arrived on a minor league deal with a view to stepping up to MLB. As Ross wasn’t going to play, the Giants had no reason to hold onto him.

Mandatory Credit: Bleacher Report

Ross’s decision mirrors that of his younger brother who will also sit out of the new season. His career deteriorated after a spate of injuries. In short, Ross looked like a worldbeater during his days with the Padres, but would still be a great depth arm for many teams.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

3. Victor Oladipo

It was a very frustrating season for Oladipo. First, injury kept him out for a major chunk of the season. This also disrupted him when he came back and prevented him from showing his full potential in the games that he did play. Now the Indiana Pacers confirmed that he won’t be at Disney World.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

This is a massive blow for the Pacers as they hope to make a run into the playoffs. Some people feel that Oladipo is missing an opportunity from reminding the league of his talents. But the two-time All-Star says he’s not mentally or physically ready. He’s arguably the most influential loss for the restart.

Mandatory Credit: Yahoo Sports

2. Wellington Castillo

‘Beef’ was the third Washington Nationals’ player to opt out of their 60-man roster. He has a wife and two children in the Dominican Republic which is why he doesn’t want to spend his summer playing baseball away from them. However, his coaches understand.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

He was competing to be the Nationals’ third option at catcher behind Kurt Suzuki and Yan Gomes. With the expanded roster format, there was a good chance that he would play on opening day as part of the active roster. But family comes first and Castillo decided he had to prioritize.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

1. Bradley Beal

Washington Wizards star Beal lit up their season. And that’s exactly why he chose to opt out of the bubble. After a career year, Beal and the Wizards recognize the need for him to stay healthy. Fans expect Beal to stay in Washington in 2020 after he signed a two-year extension last year.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

However, the Wizards aren’t exactly competitive, so Beal will keep his options open. He averaged 30.5 points per game this season, a new career-high by nearly five points. He’s in the top form of his NBA career and will be a vital cog for the Wizards next season.

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