Matt Barnes: Some NBA players say they’re not comfortable playing until racial injustice addressed
The NBA is also slated to soon begin training and playing games.
"A couple guys from the Lakers and the Clippers ... there are some whispers about some teams not being comfortable. Some guys want to play and some don't want to play."@Matt_Barnes22 on players wanting injustices in the black community addressed before basketball resumes. pic.twitter.com/C3ULiUaZ7u— Ball Don’t Lie (@Balldontlie) June 7, 2020
I get it. Coronavirus already gave a dystopian feel to the world, and the marchers in the streets have further upended any sense of normalcy. The issues being raised are so important. Many jobs suddenly feel inconsequential. How could anyone focus on something as trivial as basketball in a time like this?
Also to be considered: Racism was a problem in the United States a week ago, a month ago, a year ago, a decade ago… NBA players continued to play amid that greater injustice. There is a heightened awareness right now, and that is fantastic (though it came due to the tragic death of George Floyd). But this is not a new problem.
Ultimately, I would be surprised if any players sit out. Feeling disillusioned is completely understandable. Talking about not playing is a logical step. Actually sitting out and sacrificing high salaries and a platform to speak on these issues in a league that has supported its players speaking out (though sometimes tepidly)? That’s probably a bridge too far.
Yet, there would be some (inexact, but similar) precedent: WNBA star Maya Moore.