Warriors

Warriors' Bazemore ready to leave 2020 in rearview mirror

Warriors
Kent Bazemore

Warriors guard Kent Bazemore is bringing perspective into 2021.

He told NBC Sports Bay Area he’s leaving “the chaos” behind in 2020, and he rewound the tape of his life to explain some major life events that impacted his family.

The movie reel of chaos starts in 2019, Bazemore said.

His son Jett was born in April 2019. About a month later, his mother-in-law died on Mother’s Day weekend.

Bazemore was traded in August to the Portland Trailblazers. Then he was traded in January 2020 to the Kings. That same month, Bazemore and his wife Samantha learned they were pregnant again.

COVID-19 flared up in March 2020, postponing the NBA season.

Bazemore and his Kings teammates were in the playoff picture, and Bazemore remembers the long period of waiting to learn if they could complete their season.

The Orlando Bubble was the solution, and Bazemore was away from his family for 53 days.

The Kings were part of the eight-game regular season that jumpstarted the NBA bubble experience in Orlando to determine playoff seeding. Sacramento struggled, and the San Antonio Spurs and Phoenix Suns leapfrogged the Kings in the standings before Sacramento was mathematically eliminated.

Kent Bazemore was ready to go home.

“My head was spinning,” he said. “I got back from the bubble and stripped everything away.”

Bazemore halted his personal projects, paused his foundation’s work and told everyone he needed a break.

He dove into his family life, reconnecting with his wife and his son. His daughter Nixon was born in September.

 

At the end of November, Bazemore signed with the Warriors on a one-year, veteran’s minimum contract. He felt like he was coming full-circle by rejoining the team that took a chance on him in 2012 when he was an undrafted rookie.

“I packed this huge bag,” Bazemore said, imagining he’s Santa Claus with a sack full of baggage slung over his shoulder. “That’s exactly what I’m leaving in 2020.”

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Bazemore shrugged his shoulders, shaking off the baggage from some tough months.

“I’m walking into 2021 with less tension in the body. I feel more free. I’m looking forward to what’s ahead. There’s a real good energy around, I like it.”

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