J.J. Redick left the Los Angeles Clippers to sign a one-year, $23 million deal with the Phildelphia 76ers as an unrestricted free agent this summer. Now, in a short documentary filmed by UNINTERRUPTED aptly titled The Process, Redick detailed the toll free agency and traveling as a professional basketball player has on his family.
"The side of professional [basketball players’] wives that sort of gets glamorized and there's a perception that their lives are easy. But the reality is for the most part, they're single parents for nine months out of the year. When I'm on the road, she's on her own. The night before a game when I'm home, I'm thinking about the game. It's hard for me to say this and admit this, but I don't even know if I'm present half the time.
“I'm not gonna stay in Brooklyn because my wife wants me to stay in Brooklyn. That's just not gonna happen. She knows that.
“I really care about my family. I really care about my kids. I really care about my wife. And I really care about their happiness. It's a part of the decision. If I'm being completely honest, it's 30 percent winning, it's 30 percent salary, it's 30 percent fit or enjoyment of playing/how I think I'll like playing there. And the other 10 percent is how do I look out for my family and their lifestyle? And my wife wants me to be happy. I think that's the main thing. She knows how much I put into this, and so she wants me to enjoy playing."
Yes, Redick cashed out. A player whose last contract paid $28 million over four years will make roughly 80 percent of that next season alone to be the veteran presence for a fledgling Philly team building on a young core of Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons, Dario Saric, and rookie Markelle Fultz.
The fit is perfect — he won’t win a championship in Philly, but he’ll space the floor for a team devoid of shooters and help mentor the foundation for a budding franchise moving forward.
But Redick’s introspective look into free agency shows the level of thought that goes into a life-changing decision like choosing one town over another. It also shows how hard it can be on the immediate family of a professional basketball player.