After the NBA announced Thursday they will be returning next month several NBA players announced Friday they may sit the rest of the season out.
According to heavy.,
Avery Bradley and Dwight Howard were among the players to speak up in Friday’s galvanizing conference call about the season restarting with more than 80 other players, including NBPA Vice President Kyrie Irving, NBPA president Chris Paul, Kevin Durant and Carmelo Anthony.
Kyrie Irving says he is against the plan to restart the season in the bubble of Disney’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando.
On Fridays call Irving said, “I’m not with the systematic racism and the bull- Something smells a little fishy. Whether we want to admit it or not, we are targeted as black men every day we wake up.”
Kyrie Irving told NBA players on call Friday, sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium: “I don’t support going into Orlando. I’m not with the systematic racism and the bullshit. Something smells a little fishy.”
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) June 13, 2020
Howard voiced thinks that getting the games started again will become a distraction from the issues the country is facing through the protests against police brutality and racism in policing following the death of George Floyd.
Another NBA player, Adrian Wojnarowski: said “Once we start playing basketball again, the news will turn from systemic racism to ‘who did what’ in the game last night. It’s a crucial time for us to be able to play and blend that to impact what’s happening in our communities.”
But LeBron James seems to be on a different page than his teammates. And why wouldn’t he be, his team was favored to be in the championship this year.
LeBron James did not join the player’s call on Friday.
According to a separate article by heavy., The Atheltic’s Sam Amick, says James believes that playing won’t affect his ability to help:
So with so many fellow players focused on those very issues, and wondering aloud whether the magnitude of this Black Lives Matter moment means they might be better off making a difference at home, why wouldn’t he join this particular chat that was led by his old co-star who is now a vice president for the National Basketball Players Association, the Brooklyn Nets’ Kyrie Irving?
Because sources say James, whose Lakers have as good a chance at the title as any of the 22 teams invited to Walt Disney World, believes playing in Orlando won’t deter his ability to continue inspiring change.
He wants to keep making his mark off the court. He wants to play basketball. And as has always been the case, he clearly believes he can do both at the same time.
Could this drive fans away from the NBA?
There are already millions of people boycotting businesses like Starbucks, Amazon, and L’oreal for not remaining neutral in these escalated times.
Sports have always been a great unifier. It’s a shame they don’t see that. Instead, they are allowing the devil to use them as another tool to divide the country.