Lakers Video: Thomas Bryant Explains Why He Wears No. 31
Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

During the offseason, the Los Angeles Lakers made a concerted effort to target young players with high motors and athletic ability in an effort to rectify the 2021-22 roster.

To that end, they brought back Thomas Bryant, whom they originally selected No. 42 overall in the 2017 NBA Draft. After being waived by the Lakers in 2018, he landed with the Washington Wizards where he developed into a shot-blocking, outside-shooting big man that’s tailor-made for the modern game.

Since signing back with the Lakers, Bryant has reportedly been one of the standout performers in player workouts which bodes well for his chances to start alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis. His mobility and activity on both ends of the floor could make him a key piece of the rotation as the Lakers look to make it back to the postseason.

Bryant recently participated in a rapid-fire Q&A session where he revealed the reasoning behind wearing No. 31:

“I chose 31 because I was born on July 31st and I always promised myself no matter what I’m working at I will always put my effort, my time, all of it into it 24 hours, seven days a week. And when you add 24 and 7 it equals 31.”

In his rookie year, Bryant wore No. 31 and it makes sense for him to resume donning it during his second stint with the team. The young big man is known for his passionate play on the court, and so far it sounds like he’s been showing that same type of attitude and approach as he prepares for the upcoming 2022-23 season.

Bryant’s energy is a welcomed addition to a team that surely lacked some of that enthusiasm last year. Los Angeles was fortunate to be able to reunite with Bryant and it will be fun to see how much of an impact he has once the games finally tip-off.

Thomas Bryant believes he’s grown up since leaving Los Angeles in 2018

With youth comes immaturity and that was an issue for Bryant during his first year with the Lakers as he was prone to outbursts when things went wrong. However, Bryant believes he has grown into a much more mature person and player since 2018 and is ready to show it this season.

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