When the Los Angeles Lakers played their home opener against the Houston Rockets last year, Rajon Rondo and Chris Paul got into a fight that led to three suspensions and $836,805 in fines. If there is another brawl this season, fans can expect Jared Dudley to be in the middle of it.
During an interview with Spectrum SportsNet at Lakers media day on Friday, Dudley said he’s ready to stand up for his teammates if things get out of hand this season:
“Any flagrant foul on LeBron James, just give me the $20,000 fine. It’s on, straight up. Anyone touches Anthony Davis or LeBron James, that’s part of my job here. I’ve made my money, they can make my minimum … Nah, they can’t take that. They can’t take that.
“But no, I think you’ve got to have it throughout the year. You’ve got to have one or two guys. I mean, that’s not my role, but you stand for your guys, and so even though it’s not the old days where you could fight and get that, there’s a certain thing you have to have.”
It’s possible that Dudley is just saying things a good teammate would say, but he’s shown in the past that he’s literally willing to put his money where his mouth.
In the midst of highly-competitive playoff series against the Philadelphia 76ers in April, Dudley got into it with every player on the opposing team because of a hard foul committed on Jarrett Allen. The following day, Dudley was fined $25,000.
Obviously Dudley is hoping that he doesn’t have to miss out on thousands of dollars next season, but if Dudley sees a play he doesn’t like, he’s going to react to it, for better or for worse.