Thunder, Rockets, Lakers, Blazers To Boycott Wednesday’s Games

In the wake of the Bucks’ decision to boycott Game 5 of their first-round playoff series against the Magic, the Thunder and Rockets will follow suit and boycott Game 5 of their series this evening, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic (via Twitter).

The Lakers and Trail Blazers, who were scheduled to play Game 5 of their series later tonight, are also boycotting, according to Charania (via Twitter). Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports first reported (via Twitter) that Portland and L.A. were leaning toward not playing tonight’s game.

The protests are a response to the recent police shooting of Jacob Blake, a 29-year-old Black man, in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

The Raptors and Celtics, who are scheduled to play Game 1 of their second-round series on Thursday, had been the first teams to broach the topic of a boycott. Raptors guard Fred VanVleet explained the thinking behind the idea to reporters earlier this week.

“We knew coming here or not coming here was not going to stop anything, but I think ultimately playing or not playing puts pressure on somebody,” VanVleet said, per Malika Andrews and Tim Bontemps of eSPN. “So, for example, this happened in Kenosha, Wisconsin, if I’m correct? Would it be nice if, in a perfect world, we all say we’re not playing, and the owner of the Milwaukee Bucks — that’s going to trickle down. If he steps up to the plate and puts pressure on the district attorney’s office, and state’s attorney, and governors, and politicians there to make real change and get some justice.

“I know it’s not that simple. But, at the end of the day, if we’re gonna sit here and talk about making change, then at some point we’re gonna have to put our nuts on the line and actually put something up to lose, rather than just money or visibility.”

Bringing attention to social justice issues and systemic racism was among the players’ primary goals when they agreed to the NBA’s restart plan this summer. However, in the wake of the latest shooting of a Black man by police, a number of players felt as if their efforts to raise awareness and enact change were being overshadowed by on-court results and have decided to change their tactics.

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40 thoughts on “Thunder, Rockets, Lakers, Blazers To Boycott Wednesday’s Games

  1. George Ruth

    Should shut down the rest of this farce of a season since the players are refusing to do their jobs.

    • mcmillankmm

      Agreed….Boycott = no paycheck

      Then again these same guys were complaining their lunches weren’t up to par, while the rest of the country struggles to afford lunch

      • fezzik

        It’s not even really a boycott. It’s a postponement disguised as a boycott in an attempt to appease the mob.

    • fightinfisch

      No Need. Tv ratings tell the whole story. People are turning the channel for big brother and Fox News. I expect this will continue further with these announcements

  2. bigtoro21

    This is unbelievable. He was guilty and received fair action against him.

    • George Ruth

      You don’t know if Mr Blake is guilty of anything & if he was guilty of something then the Officer DID NOT have the authority to be Judge, Jury & Executioner. OH YEAH Under the U S Constitution everyone is innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

        • bostondynasty

          Shhh. The cops wait until AFTER bible study to start dragging people of color out onto the street to gun down. Not before. And definitely not during.

        • takeitback

          White people resist officers every day and don’t get shot. Police officers don’t have the authority to be judge, jury, and/or executioner.

          • imindless

            They do you just don’t hear about it because it doesn’t fit the narrative.

  3. Mollysdad

    Cancel the playoffs, don’t crown a champion, give everybody their participation trophy, that way these players can spend more time out there on the front lines protesting with the rest of them on their own time. It’s a shame they all risked their health and left their families to join the bubble and then do this. They are just alienating the 7 fans they have left.

  4. harden-westbrook-mvps

    Put the blame where it belongs, on the guy who panicked and obviously didn’t know how to do his job by shooting a guy 7 times at point blank in the back when the guy was checking on his kids in the back of his car.

    • harden-westbrook-mvps

      It’s his fault we don’t get to watch any more basketball, thanks jerk!

    • The only thing I can think of is that there better be a gun on that front seat of the car or even a knife Maybe. Maybe. No gun no knife, that guy should be executed for what he did.

      • Curtisrowe

        Agreed with Hiflew. 95 percent of these people never post here, then come on and thump their chests acting all aggro. I could probably do without knowing what they think.

    • So far we’ve been civil and just expressing opinions. Nobody calling each other a name. Let’s see how this goes. You could be right in an hour or so LOL

    • hiflew

      Although I wish they would just start banning repeat offenders instead of stopping everyone else from commenting. There are some commenters that stand out as troublemakers that tend to drag down everyone else into the muck.

  5. Oklahoma Native

    As a long term fan of MLB, NBA, and NFL, I’ve thought about the players consideration of their fans. Just who do they think pay their massive salaries? NBA average is over 7 mill a year and NFL is almost 3 mill. It is a job for them but entertainment for us. And just what are they accomplishing by kneeling and politicizing the games? Not much. Instead, take the millions you are banking and help those in need. Start some reform programs. Do some outreach programs. Actually take action and do something. Stop portraying this emotional disparity attitude. If you are really that upset by current events and the way things are done, then put your money where your mouth is. I totally agree that there are instances where the policing force uses unnecessary force; however, you are talking about people who are paid just over the poverty level to protect our rights, our property, and our lives. You are not in their shoes and do not see the full picture that causes them to do what they do. As officers of the law they are taught to use judgement and use force only where necessary and to shoot only if lives are threatened. Only 10 to 12% of the US citizens make over 200k a year. Only a very small percentage get the chance for that golden ticket of riches. Meaning, not only are you playing in a bubble, you live in a bubble. A bubble that is not the reality of the normal citizen. So again, if you want to make a difference, then instead of buying million dollar homes and multiple fancy cars, put that money back into the communities that gave you the money in the first place!

    • I give no fox

      I think your projections are off base. Many players do put money where their mouth is. The vast majority do community outreach. Unfortunately most of it doesn’t get reported on. You can’t fix the injustices by throwing money at the problem. Systemic change doesn’t happen because you donate a couple million dollars to a cause. Also, police are paid quite handsomely with lifetime benefits. The average salary is well above poverty, like 5x the poverty level, and that’s just the average. Police can make over six figures. Everyone needs to be held accountable for their actions, police are no different.

    • Otogar

      They did accomplish something: they are making you (and other basketball fans) think and discuss about the whole thing. I wouldn’t say that’s “not much”.

  6. imindless

    Declining viewship since 2012 by 40 percent….People want to see sports not political activists. Especially uninformed ones like lebum james. Anyone else see the report that came out about breonna Taylor? She was painted as the victim but the details depict her as something quiet different in fact. If this isn’t a fail attempt at a smear campaign idk what is. Most of the unrest and “systemic racism” comes from democratically run states but it’s somehow trumps fault.

    • hiflew

      It’s not his fault, it’s been going on for a lot longer than he has been in charge, but he is not doing anything to stop it either. And he is using his rhetoric to defend the practice as well.

      There is plenty of fault on both sides here. Most of these “victims” are criminals. However, that doesn’t mean they deserve to die either. The police officers in question are way too trigger happy. But that doesn’t mean that people should just ignore their commands of authority and just walk away either. Neither side is 100% right and neither side is 100% wrong. The problem is that both sides of the argument are so passionate about their beliefs that they are unwilling to admit that the other side might have a point about certain details. Until we figure out how to come together, boycotts will not matter.

    • x%sure

      Another comment ruined by Lebronophobia, this time maybe from the right. Does he support protest or work?— you decide. The guy’s walking a figurative tightrope.

      It is not Lebron’s job to be college-educated; most people are not. The NBA did not require it in 2003. Too bad, but too late now to complain, except to oppose the removal of the 19-yo restriction.

      Plenty of people need more knowledge, yet still speak up. Sometimes a reporter sticks a mic in his face and he doesn’t feel like saying No comment. The world is what it is. People do what they can, and LJ’s influence is overall positive (Compared to his beginnings and money is only part of it). But I digress and stop.

  7. GoLandCrabs

    Theres a reason even the progressive Adam Silver didn’t anticipate this. Boycotting games over a man who r@#ed a 15 year old? Really?? What a joke.

  8. One thing that comes to mind in society nowadays is the total disrespect for authority. Now don’t get me wrong if I’m Guns a-blazing For NO GOOD Reason I should be guns Ablazed myself. If you know what I mean. But seriously a few of us, maybe a lot of us, we’re outraged at how television was glorifying Rebellion.

    I specifically blame Bart Simpson for a lot of this crap seriously I’m being serious. Don’t laugh. I know some of you will but kids learn a lot from television especially with two working parents and the television is now the babysitter. Bart was a snotty bratty disobedient kid and now everywhere I look in the grocery store or wherever kids are often and can be snotty bratty and disobedient. Those kids turn to twenty-somethings who are snotty bratty disobedient.

    If a man with a gun pulls Me over, I’m yes or no sir whatever he wants. Not talking back or screaming at him or calling him names. Are you kidding me. My goodness

    • kylegocougs

      There’s lots of videos of cops killing people who are following directions and saying “yes sir.” The cops refuse to stop murdering people.

        • x%sure

          Secretly Homer supports the Bart-ism by being the grownup version. The whole family enables! In your metaphor, the whole media.

  9. fightinfisch

    More reason to turn you off like the rest of most of the USA Big brother and Fox News are crushing you in the ratings.

  10. locotrouble

    No Dave isn’t wrong that fool is wrong! He should have listened and none of this would have happened. Think about that for a second. If you were a cop and you were telling a person to stop and show me your hands and he is holding a knife and he reaches in their car you would shot too.

  11. goldenmisfit

    A sexual predator with a deadly weapon did not listen to police and was shot but it’s the police fault? Absolutely ridiculous making a criminal into a martyr.

  12. KnickerbockerAl

    I’m glad you’ll showing your true colors. If you don’t understand systemic racism has taken us here. Then there’s really no conversation.
    Ignorance is the tool of the rulers.
    Education is the process that builds a true nation.

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