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Some NBA teams have played ‘Negro National Anthem’ at games

NBA-Negro National Anthem Basketball

FILE - In this Feb. 5, 2018, file photo, Miami Heat players stand together during the singing of the national anthem before the start of an NBA basketball game against the Orlando Magic in Miami. Several NBA teams have played the so-called “Negro National Anthem” at games during Black History Month thanks to the urging of a retired Howard University professor. Eugene Williams, who is 76, lives in Clinton, Md., made it his goal to get professional and collegiate teams to play “Lift Every Voice and Sing” during February and is hoping next year even more NBA teams play the song during Black History Month. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee, File)

AP

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Several NBA teams have played the so-called “Negro National Anthem” at games during Black History Month thanks to the urging of a retired Howard University professor.

Eugene Williams, who is 76, lives in Clinton, Maryland, made it his goal to get professional and collegiate teams to play “Lift Every Voice and Sing” during February. Williams says he learned the song has a kid and it has given him strength, and he wants it to do the same for others.

Williams says the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors have already played “Lift Every Voice and Sing” this month.

He will attend the game to hear the Washington Wizards play the song Wednesday for their game against the Warriors.

Williams is hoping next year even more NBA teams play the song during Black History Month. He is also pushing for universities to include the song during games.