NBA referees will kneel with players and coaches during the national anthem at Walt Disney World, per Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports.
The 45 referees selected by the NBA to officiate the restart recently had a “spirited” debate about the matter.
NBA referees will join the players and coaching staff in gathering around the “Black Lives Matter” signage on the court to kneel during the playing of the national anthem to peacefully protest racial injustice in America, league sources tell Yahoo Sports.
The 45 referees selected by the league to officiate the restart recently had a “spirited” debate on whether to insert themselves into the storylines and it was decided that they wanted to support the players as well as the officials who have experienced racial injustice, sources say.
All four teams playing Thursday on the first day of the restart — Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Clippers, Utah Jazz and New Orleans Pelicans — will participate in the demonstration, sources say.
In 2016, Colin Kaepernick became the first professional athlete to kneel during the National Anthem. The former San Francisco 49ers star was protesting police brutality and systemic racism against African Americans.
Numerous NBA players have been responding with “justice for Breonna Taylor” during their media interviews with reporters down in Orlando, Florida. The tragic deaths of Taylor and George Floyd at the hands of policemen have brought racial injustices back to the forefront and NBA players believe it’s more important than ever to speak out about racism since their platform is so large.
For the seeding games, the Brooklyn Nets, Orlando Magic and Washington Wizards will battle for the final two playoff spots in the Eastern Conference, while the Memphis Grizzlies, New Orleans Pelicans, Portland Trail Blazers, San Antonio Spurs, Phoenix Suns and Sacramento Kings will do the same for the eighth seed out West.
NBA, Player, Los Angeles Lakers
World news – US – BREAKING: NBA Referees To Join Players In Kneeling During National Anthem