NBA to paint Black Lives Matter on sides of courts
The NBA will paint the words “Black Lives Matter” on all of its courts for when play resumes at a closed setting in Orlando, according to an ESPN report citing league sources.
The WNBA also reportedly discussing the same plan.
NBA players union president Chris Paul also told ESPN that the league and union are working together to allow players to wear uniforms with personalized messages addressing social justice in place of the players’ last names.
A number of NBA players have called for the league and players association to take an even stronger stand for social activism and racial justice amid nationwide demonstrations sparked over outrage at the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
Some NBA players have questioned whether play, which was halted in March as the coronavirus crisis gripped the country, should resume, worrying it would take attention away from the social justice movement.
Twenty-two teams are set to resume play beginning July 30 at Walt Disney World in Orlando. They will play an abbreviated schedule to determine the final lineups for a 16-team playoff. All of the teams will play in a “bubble” element in Orlando to try to protect them and staff from the coronavirus. No fans will be in attendance at the games.
The league reported Friday that 16 players of 302 tested positive for COVID-19 in the first set of mandatory tests performed ahead of the restart.
Floyd, an unarmed Black man, was killed after a white police officer knelt on his neck as he asked for help. The officer, Derek Chauvin, was charged with second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. Three other officers on the scene were also charged with aiding and abetting murder.
According to a recent Pew Research poll, two-thirds of U.S. adults say they support the Black Lives Matter movement, with 38 percent saying they strongly support it.
The support extends along all racial lines, with 86 percent of African Americans, 60 percent of whites, 77 percent of Hispanics and 75 percent of Asian Americans showing support for the movement.
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