Portland Trail Blazers forward Trevor Ariza is opting to not play in the NBA’s Orlando restart in order to fulfill a one-month visitation period with his 12-year-old son, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Ariza’s son is the subject of a custody case, per Wojnarowski:
Sources: Ariza has been involved in a custody case over his 12-year old son, and mother’s choice of granting a court-ordered one month visitation period during league’s quarantine of teams in Orlando left Ariza to choose those parenting responsibilities over competing in restart. https://t.co/STYQi2RGDW— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 22, 2020
Ariza joined the Blazers is February after he was traded by the Sacramento Kings. The 15-year veteran started in each of the 21 games he appeared in for Portland, averaging 11 points and 4.8 rebounds in 33.4 minutes per game. The forward helped boost Portland’s outside shooting by knocking down 40% of his 3-point attempts.
ESPN’s Bobby Marks points out that Portland is allowed to sign a replacement player for Ariza, and the substitute player’s salary won’t count towards the team’s overall salary:
The Trail Blazers can replace Trevor Ariza with a substitute player. Although Portland is in the luxury tax, salary earned by a replacement player is excluded from the salary of that team. Portland also has an additional roster spot available.— Bobby Marks (@BobbyMarks42) June 22, 2020
You can read Steve Dewald’s outline of possible free-agent options for Portland here.