For the USA, 2021 has started with an unexpected political protest as Donald Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol. The move sparked debates all over the nation, with comparisons being drawn to the Black Lives Matter protests that engulfed the country last summer. NBA players and coaches spoke up on the issue, many referring to the protests as disgraceful. As a result, teams once again took the knee during the national anthem, trying to peacefully protest.
The Mavericks and Nuggets locked arms and took a knee during the national anthem tonight. pic.twitter.com/X36YcCW4re— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) January 8, 2021
Before their game on Thursday night (EST), the Dallas Mavericks and Denver Nuggets linked their arms and took the knee during the national anthem. This comes as a response to the Capitol protests, and the ruling given for the Jacob Blake shooting. Before the Mavericks and Nuggets, the Milwaukee Bucks and Detroit Pistons took the knee before tip-off.
Just move on man— Shiromine (@Shirominero) January 8, 2021
Yeah, it's stunning and brave.— Milo Stone (@GeniusMilo) January 8, 2021
It would fit inline with the song that’s about the White House burning when America lost to a bunch of British farmers— Maxwell Thomas (@Smasher225) January 8, 2021
Remember when it was supposedly just to be against police brutality and not political or against the country? Yeah that sure lasted— Victor (@swogrider) January 8, 2021
The NBA has been extremely vocal about their BLM support since last year, even helping with the US Elections last November. As the 2020-21 season began, teams have reaffirmed their stand, speaking up when they have to. Fans, however, seem to have a mixed reaction to their actions. Some agree that the players need a lot of courage to take a step like this, while others hope for consistency.
"Where was this last week? They only do it so they don’t look bad, none of them actually care," one fan wrote. Another pointed out that the reason has shifted, and is no longer police brutality.
From head coaches to retired players, the NBA has had strong and candid opinions on the US Capitol protests. The league's fight against inequality has only gotten stronger, especially after players have brought up the possibilities if at all black people had stormed the capitol. Additionally, the Golden State Warriors, LA Clippers, Miami Heat and Boston Celtics also took the knee. The Toronto Raptors and Phoenix Suns held hands, standing in a circle midcourt – an idea generated from Chris Paul and Kyle Lowry.
(Image credits: NBA on TNT)