Kerr completely opposes Trump's ban: 'Could be breeding anger and terror'

Kerr completely opposes Trump's ban: 'Could be breeding anger and terror'

Steve Kerr spoke out again Sunday night. The basketball coach dived into the deep end of our current sociopolitical pool, where the waters are more treacherous than ever and where advances for decades, if not centuries, in the making are imperiled.

In so doing, Kerr erased the line written, in crayon, by a mob of narrow-minded souls congregating within their cave. The line reads: Stick to sports.

With the instability in the nation’s capital adversely affecting so many lives, in so many places, how does anyone in America with a conscience, no matter his occupation, ignore the world beyond?

Sports have been an integral part of America’s sociopolitical fabric for more than 100 years, no later than our participation in the modern Olympic Games in 1896. From Jack Johnson and Jim Thorpe, to Joe Louis and Jackie Robinson, to Bill Russell and Jim Brown, to Muhammad Ali and Billie Jean King, to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Manute Bol, sport has been one of the first places we go to check our national temperature.

And, these days, we’re running a fever.

We’ve had consecutive weekends of national demonstrations, involving millions, over the direction in which we’re being taken. And just as sports figures like Aubrey Huff and Curt Schilling can voice their support of and belief to the current president, in the process castigating those who dare to question, so, too, can sports figures like David West and Kerr voice measured concern and dissent.

With President Trump signing an executive order designed to ban Muslims, with particular emphasis on seven countries, in the name of “keeping our country safe” from terrorists, professionals of all stripes are speaking up. We’re hearing from doctors and lawyers, soldiers and teachers, police officers and individuals roaming the halls of technology.

If you don’t know or care about someone feeling persecuted even more than before, well, you are in the cave.

On the subject of terrorism, Kerr has a particularly personal viewpoint. His father, Malcolm, was assassinated 33 years ago this month by two Islamic terrorists who charged into American University of Beirut, shot Kerr as he walked to his office -- he was president of the school -- and ran away.

“I would just say, as someone whose family member was a victim of terrorism, having lost my father, if we’re trying to combat terrorism by banishing people from coming to this country, by really going against the principles of what our country is about and creating fear, it’s the wrong way to go about it,” Kerr said after the Warriors-Trail Blazers game in Portland.

“If anything, we could be breeding anger and terror. So I’m completely against what’s happening. I think it’s shocking. I think it’s a horrible idea and I really feel for all of the people who are affected, families are being torn apart. And I worry in the big picture what this means to the security of the world. It’s going about it, completely opposite. You want to solve terror; you want to solve crime. It’s not the way to do it.”

Some will understand where Kerr is coming from on this and they’ll see the light he is trying to shine. Others will shrug and disagree, some politely and some abrasively.

Some might even summon the gall to suggest Kerr should stick to sports.

They’ll suggest the same to Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, who has been an outspoken critic of Trump’s rhetoric and behavior. They’ll suggest it to those within the sports media who dare to express apprehension.

But sports and politics are linked not only because they sometimes share corridors of clout but also because they routinely cross paths. The Olympics serve as a showcase of national vigor and influence. Champions visit the White House. Numerous athletes, liberals and conservatives, have retired and entered politics.

Indeed, there are those who have and will continue to urge Sen. Cory Booker (D-New Jersey), a former tight end at Stanford, to pursue the White House in 2020.

Booker still loves sports, but he surely feels the national anxiety. And there he was on Sunday, at Dulles International Airport, just outside Washington, D.C., supporting and speaking out on behalf of those protesting Trump’s executive order.

If Cassius Clay had been a member of the “stick to sports” society, he would not have become Muhammad Ali, who stood on principle in the 1960s and waited patiently for the rest of society catch up to him.

Voices are needed, and now. This is the moment for the truly informed high-profile figures in sports to stand up and be heard. As for those not informed, do the research and wake up.

Educate yourself, or you risk staying in your cave when we need all the wisdom we can get.

Andrew Bogut's agent had no idea center was talking to Warriors about return

Andrew Bogut's agent had no idea center was talking to Warriors about return

When rumors around Andrew Bogut's potential return to the Warriors began to circulate, many people were caught entirely off guard.

But it wasn't just fans and analysts who were surprised the 2005 No. 1 overall pick would be returning to help his former team capture another title. 

Bogut's agent apparently had no idea the veteran center and the Warriors had been discussing a return to the Bay Area.

“Funny enough, my agent didn’t even know,” Bogut told The Athletic's Ethan Strauss. “I told my agent, ‘Hey I’m talking to the Warriors,’ and he was like, ‘What the f***? Do they know I’m your agent? Why don’t they call me?’”

The 34-year-old last played for the Warriors during the 2015-16 season and has been out of the NBA since January of 2018.

[RELATED: Steph explains why final regular season games are very important to Warriors]

In the four games since his return to the two-time defending champions, Bogut is averaging 5.3 points and 6.2 rebounds while looking slimmer and more athletic, something he attributes to drinking more beer and having a less rigorous schedule while being back home in Australia. 

The unexpected reunion has been a success so far. Perhaps when Bogut officially hangs up his sneakers he can start a second career as an agent.

It's worked out so far.

Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic suffers gruesome leg injury vs. Nets


Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic suffers gruesome leg injury vs. Nets

Blazers starting center Jusuf Nurkic suffered a horrible, horrible injury during Monday night's game against the Nets.

If you watched it live or have watched a replay, you know how brutal it was. If you haven't watched the video, DON'T.

Just think Gordon Hayward, Kevin Ware, Paul George and Shaun Livingston.

It was that bad.

Shortly after midnight, the Blazers announced that Nurkic suffered a compound fractures to his left tibia and fibula, and that there is no timetable for his return.

Nurkic was having a monster game at the time of the injury, dropping in 32 points and grabbing 16 rebounds, and the Blazers beat the Nets in double overtime, but neither matters at this point.

Losing Nurkic is another huge blow for the Blazers, who currently sit in fourth place in the Western Conference. They are already playing without shooting guard CJ McCollum, who strained his popliteus muscle in his left knee.

Warriors center DeMarcus Cousins was among the current and former players to send their thoughts and prayers to Nurkic.