The last 24 hours in sports have been a complete whirlwind. Yesterday, the Milwaukee Bucks’ decided to boycott game 5 of their playoff series against the Orlando Magic in protest because of the shooting of Jacob Blake, a 29 year old Black man from Kenosha, Wisconsin. Soon, all the NBA games were postponed, along with MLB games, MLS games, as well as WNBA games.
There was a meeting held by the NBA Players Association yesterday where the Lakers and Clippers voted to end the season, but the rest of the teams reportedly wanted to keep playing. I can definitely understand both sides: the players have sacrificed time away from their families to keep playing in this bubble. Some fans thought that if the season ended then this bubble was all for nothing. There was a lot of time and effort that went into planning.
On the other hand, I admire the players for taking a stand. They want justice for Jacob Blake and the officers to be arrested. George Hill, a guard for the Milwaukee Bucks, read a statement to the media on behalf of his team. “When we take the court and represent Milwaukee and Wisconsin, we are expected to play at a high level, give maximum effort and hold each other accountable.”
“We hold ourselves to that standard, and in this moment we are demanding the same from lawmakers and law enforcement. We are calling for justice for Jacob Blake and demand the officers be held accountable. For this to occur, it’s imperative for the Wisconsin state legislature to reconvene after months of inaction and take up meaningful measures to address issues of police accountability, brutality and criminal justice reform.”
Some players are frustrated that feel like they can’t do anything to help since they have to stay in their bubble, which I understand as well.
Today the NBA announced the season will continue. Some players didn’t think ending the season early would accomplish anything. They said the bubble would have been pointless. A few others were upset that the Bucks didn’t inform them about the protest. I do think the teams and players can still make a difference inside the bubble. Athletes and other celebrities have already made a difference by being vocal and active in the fight against racism.
We’ll just have to wait and see what impact this protest made and if the players come up with any other ideas to help this country. Until then, I guess we still have basketball to watch. (Go Heat!)
What do you think about the protests?