Despite the fact that Jared Dudley rarely plays significant minutes, he has quickly become one of the favorite Los Angeles Lakers players among fans.
The reason Dudley is so popular is as much because of his play on the court as it is what he does off it.
Far before Dudley ever donned the purple and gold, he has given away free game tickets to fans for years now. The age of social media has made this practice easier than ever and now on one of the biggest stages in all of sports, his charitable efforts have garnered a lot of attention.
With a fan base as massive as that of the Lakers, his giveaways have quickly gained attention and led to many people requesting tickets. As Dudley revealed in an interview with Kyle Goon of Orange County Register, he sees and goes through every single request received:
“There’s hundreds to decide from,” he said. “I go through all of them. People think I don’t. I go through all of them. Whatever touches the heart that day.”
It is truly outstanding to see someone truly enjoying being able to grant the wishes of the most diehard fans. Many people would love to see the Lakers play in person, but simply don’t have the means to do so. It is his own struggles growing up that makes this so personal for Dudley:
“Just being a basketball fan growing up, I never got to go to NBA games, so I know how, when I went to one my senior year in high school, how exciting it was to kids who can’t afford it, or people who are diehard Laker fans,” he said. “Just trying to bless fans, whether it’s military, anniversaries, whatever is put on my heart to want to do. For me, it’s something that was natural, and just something that I wanted to do my entire career, just be in a position to give back.”
For fans of the Lakers, this is truly one of the greatest fan bases in all of sports. The Lakers fanbase stretches across the country and because of that, the ticket prices for their road games far exceed that of the average NBA game.
Dudley understands the plight of many Lakers fans and he has made it his mission to allow many who didn’t have the opportunity to see their favorite team in person. He has remained ready whenever his number is called and that is the case both on and off the court.