Andrew Wiggins is a recent NBA champion living with regret.
Golden State’s swingman had the most rewarding season of his career – he won a title, was named an All-Star for the first time, and shot a career-best 39% from three – but he had to sacrifice his own beliefs to do so.
Wiggins received a COVID vaccination last October, something he previously refused to do, but felt forced into doing after the NBA denied his exemption request.
Now, he’s speaking up about the regret he feels and the unjust pressure he was under.
“I still wish I didn’t get it, to be honest with you, but you’ve gotta do what you’ve gotta do” Wiggins told Mark Carman of FanSided. “I did it, and I was an All-Star this year and champion, so that was the good part, just not missing out on the year, the best year of my career.”
The NBA, along with the states of New York and California, forced Wiggins’ hand, ruling that if he did not get vaccinated, he would not be paid for games played within those states. That would amount to a sizable portion of Wiggins’ income, since the Warriors make their home in The Golden State.
Wiggins would’ve been out roughly $16 million.
“But for my body, I just don’t like putting all that stuff in my body, so I didn’t like that and I didn’t like that it wasn’t my choice. I didn’t like that it was either get this or don’t play,” added Wiggins, per FanSided.
Those comments echo what the top pick in the 2014 NBA Draft said in early October when he stated: “The only options were to get vaccinated or not play in the NBA. It was a tough decision. Hopefully, it works out in the long run and in 10 years I’m still healthy.”
History tells us the Warriors captured the NBA title. But it’s easy to see why Wiggins feels defeated.
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