This week’s protests following the shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin have resulted in the postponement of NBA postseason competition and passionate responses from a variety of personalities across the world of professional basketball.
Playoff games were canceled for Wednesday and Thursday. Off the court, many have made their voices heard.
Kenny Smith of the ‘NBA on TNT’ team walked off the show’s set in solidarity.
Los Angeles Lakers guard J.R. Smith spread his message on Instagram.
JR Smith had a strong message relating to the NBA players' boycott. pic.twitter.com/80yPYnj5gv— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) August 26, 2020
Wizards guard John Wall:
Grizzlies guard Ja Morant:
this shit gotta stop ‼️— Ja Morant (@JaMorant) August 26, 2020
Clippers head coach Doc Rivers spread one of the strongest messages in response to police brutality.
'We keep loving this country and this country does not love us back' — NBA coach Doc Rivers was visibly shaken while discussing the shooting of Jacob Blake & police brutality in the U.S. pic.twitter.com/CXKk41Cs6I— NowThis (@nowthisnews) August 27, 2020
Former head coach Stan Van Gundy:
It would be wrong to think that today’s NBA, WNBA and MLB boycotts were about one shooting in one city. This is frustration and anger that after 400 years of racial oppression there has not been nearly enough change. How much longer will we tolerate this racial oppression?— Stan Van Gundy (@realStanVG) August 27, 2020
Referee Mark Davis shared the perspective of NBA officials.
NBA referee Marc Davis shares the referees’ decision to march in solidarity with the players on the NBA campus in Orlando on Thursday morning. pic.twitter.com/xY99HeapsJ— NBA TV (@NBATV) August 27, 2020
NBA legend Bill Russell reminded us that reminded us that there are bigger things than basketball.
In 61 I walked out if an exhibition game much like the @nba players did yesterday. I am one of the few people that knows what it felt like to make such an important decision. I am so proud of these young guys. It reminded me of this Pls RT @MSNBC @CNN pic.twitter.com/70VAIFxhtf— TheBillRussell (@RealBillRussell) August 27, 2020
Dwayne Wade kept it simple.
Stephen A. Smith: ‘This is what it’s all about, sacrifice.’
SO proud of the NBA players. pic.twitter.com/k62nNzBOUO— Stephen A Smith (@stephenasmith) August 26, 2020
Spurs guard DeMar DeRozan:
This shit bigger than basketball! Whoever don’t understand that is part of the problem.— DeMar DeRozan (@DeMar_DeRozan) August 26, 2020
Nuggets guard Jamal Murray:
WE DEMAND JUSTICE!!!— Jamal Murray (@BeMore27) August 26, 2020
Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell:
Lakers analyst Robert Horry spoke of the fear he has for his sons.
‘NBA on TNT’ analyst Chris Webber: ‘If not now, when?’
ESPN’s Bobby Marks:
Do not look at what transpired on Wednesday as meaningless.— Bobby Marks (@BobbyMarks42) August 27, 2020
What NBA players (and other leagues) showed is that they (not owners) have the power to shut down sports.
Do not take these human beings for granted.
And LeBron James:
Change doesn’t happen with just talk!! It happens with action and needs to happen NOW! For my @IPROMISESchool kids, kids and communities across the country, it’s on US to make a difference. Together. That's why your vote is @morethanavote ✊ #BlackLivesMatter— LeBron James (@KingJames) August 27, 2020
There’s no shortage of reaction to what’s going on. Please share additional voices below.