On Friday night, U.S. President Donald Trump released a statement while on board Air Force One saying, "I think what they're doing to the NBA in particular is gonna destroy basketball." He even went further and claimed that the players' actions are "threatening" the NBA.
Trump is referring to the ongoing boycott by NBA players who are protesting the Kenosha police shooting. Jacob Blake, a 20-year-old African American man, was shot four times on the back by Kenosha police officers after tasers didn't subdue him.
According to police officers, they were responding to a 9-1-1 call regarding a domestic incident. Blake has a warrant for his arrest on charges of sexual assault, trespassing, and disorderly conduct in connection with domestic abuse.
NBA players are currently using the 2019-2020 season restart as a platform for peaceful protests against social injustice. They are doing this by kneeling during the national anthem, wearing social justice statements on their jerseys, and actively speaking out to reporters regarding the recent shootings of several black individuals in the United States by Law Enforcement Officers.
The Blake shooting last August 23rd prompted NBA players to boycott the playoff games and discontinue the season.
The NBA is currently in the first round of the 2019-2020 playoffs.
All remaining teams are housed in a biosecure bubble in Disney World in Orlando, Florida, to play the rest of the season. The bubble strategy was implemented by the league to prevent the players from interacting with others while games are being played to minimize the possibility of infection due to the coronavirus pandemic.
To date, 2 to 3 games are currently suspended due to players refusing to take the floor while protesting the latest shooting by police officers.
According to The Guardian, U.S. President Donald Trump denounced the action and claims that it could ruin the sport. He rationalized that people do not want to be confronted with politics when watching sports.
He also speculated that the NFL (National Football League) will follow suit and help destroy the professional sports industry in America.
NBA superstar LeBron James helped form a group that raised millions of dollars to campaign for Democratic Presidential Candidate Joe Biden in predominantly black communities. Biden is Trump's electoral opponent in the coming November elections.