The NBA games are off to a start as activities and events are held in none other than Disney World. Not many people might know this but on the southern edge of the Florida mega-resort is a 220-acre basketball, volleyball, football, competitive cheer and lacrosse complex also known as the ESPN Wide World of Sports. The NBA teams have begun arriving at Disney since July 7.
The recent games between the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers have made a few fans happy for the restart of the season. But, there has been something more prominent that has the NBA games in its grasp, something that is bigger than basketball.
“Black Lives Matter” in the NBA games
During the national anthem, every NBA player kneeled down wearing “Black Lives Matter” shirts. These athletes have been vocal in their calls for social justice. In the wake of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor’s deaths, among many, it has caused a spark all around the world. This has led to protests against racisms, discrimination and most especially police brutality that has led to the many deaths of Black Americans.
What NBA Players Think
Unsurprisingly, one of the leading NBA players that are pushing for reforms and social equality is none other than LeBron James.
According to his interview with Turner Sports after the Lakers’ win in a game, Lebron stated, “The game of basketball has always been bigger than just a ball and a rim and 10 guys on the floor, four referees. We used this platform to spread a lot of positive, a lot of love throughout the course of the whole world.”
The suspended season last March 11 due to the pandemic has made a lot of sports fans frustrated, and the league and NBA players hope to begin it again in a positive direction, by making an impact on the world and taking a stand.
“We understand what’s going on in society right now and we’re using this NBA platform as the players, as the coaches, as organizations to continue to stand strong on that.
“It’s a good start, it’s a good start tonight. It’s great to have the NBA back and I hope our fans are proud of us tonight,” James further stated.
The Importance of “Black Lives Matter”
Last June, James and prominent athletes such as Trae Young, Jalen Rose and more helped form the More Than A Vote. This was to protect Black voting rights. On the other hand, the NBA has made progress since one of the signature steps it has chosen to take to support their players is by having the “Black Lives Matter” statement right on the court for every NBA game in Orlando.
But they still have a long way to go, and more work still needs to be done.
According to James, “In the past when we’ve seen progress, we’ve let our foot off the gas a little bit. We can’t do that. We want to continue to keep our foot on the gas, continue to push forward, continue to spread love throughout America.”
Basketball has shown that it is more than a sport and as can be seen from its players, no wonder many are avid supporters of the sport. It just goes to show that there is more to sports than meets the eye.
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