The NBA has responded to Black Lives Matter protests, calling out the protest “as divisive and as harmful to our team’s image.”NBA commissioner Adam Silver issued a statement Monday night in response to the hashtag, which began trending worldwide after the death of Alton Sterling last week.
“The NBA is dedicated to supporting our players and coaches who have the utmost respect for the lives and well-being of all of our players, coaches, and staff,” Silver wrote.
“Our fans expect our players to be champions.
And we all have the same goal, which is to give our fans the best experiences on the court and in the community.
We understand that sometimes people have different views on the issues that are being raised, and we support their right to express those views.
But our core values are the same, and I firmly believe that our values are more important than any one person’s political views.”
The NBA has taken an unprecedented step by stepping up its response to Black lives, Silver said.
“We know that there are some who are outraged by the BLM movement, but they should not misconstrue it as a hate movement,” Silver added.
“We have come to understand that many of these protests have no place on our court.
I know that many people disagree with our response, and their passion and their desire to protest are sincere.
But we have been there, we have seen firsthand, that we are here to support our players.
We support our coaches, we support our front office and our coaching staff.
And, we stand with our players in this fight for equality.”
Silver has said that he’s seen the protest as divisive and harmful to NBA’s image. “
The NBA will continue to support and respect our players on a daily basis, and this is something that is shared by all of us.”
Silver has said that he’s seen the protest as divisive and harmful to NBA’s image.
“I’m really sorry, I’m not going to sit here and talk about that.
But I am very clear on this, and that’s the truth.
It’s not a hate group,” he said.
“It’s a group of people that believe in the equality and the justice of all people.
They believe in that.
They want to see it happen, and they want the NBA to be a champion.
And they have a right to say so.
And that’s why I’ve said so clearly, that’s what I said, that the NBA is not a place that has to tolerate that sort of activity.”
While the NBA has been taking a more proactive stance against the protest, Silver acknowledged that the league is not immune from criticism.
“I think when you look at the comments that have been made about the NBA, I think there’s an opportunity for some of the criticism that has been directed at the league to be more nuanced,” Silver said, “because I think what we do, I have to say, is I don’t think we should sit on our hands and be silent.
We need to say it’s wrong, and it’s hurting our players’ careers.
But the league has to stand with the players, and to say that’s not acceptable is not accurate.”
Silver’s comments come amid a growing chorus of criticism over how the league handled the Black Lives Matter protests last week in Baltimore.
A slew of prominent NBA players, including Carmelo Anthony, Derrick Rose, James Harden, and Dwyane Wade, joined the protests.
The protests spread across the country and drew a great deal of attention to the growing gap between Black and white communities in America.
NBA players have repeatedly stated they do not condone violence, but some of them have used social media to express their frustrations with the protests, which some have deemed divisive.
In his statement Monday, Silver addressed those players’ comments.
“When a team, when an organization, has players who express support for a cause, we all stand together.
I’ve seen firsthand the impact of some of those comments, and the comments made about our league,” Silver told the New York Times.
“So I just want to take a moment here and just say, listen, I love my players, I’ve been with them my whole life.
I love the way they play the game.
But this is not who we are.
This is not the way I’m going to be in this job.
We’re a very, very diverse organization.
And it’s not our job to be intolerant of a certain set of beliefs.”