Will any NBA players take a knee or a seat during the national anthem? That's the question many sports fans have asked since 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick started the trend as a peaceful protest against police treatment of black people in America.
In a rap, Cleveland Cavaliers forward Iman Shumpert implied he would join the protest, stating: "you best believe I'm going to take me a knee for the anthem." Shumpert later said he had not cleared the decision with his team, and then said he "no longer believed taking a knee was the answer."
Stars like Stephen Curry and LeBron James have said they plan to stand for the anthem.
Today, at the NBA's board of governors meeting in Manhattan, commissioner Adam Silver said he hopes players will do "the appropriate thing" and stand.
"I don't know if the players are organizing anything," Silver said, according to ESPN. "All I can say is what we have seen in multiple preseason games so far is our players standing for the national anthem. It would be my hope that they continue to stand for the national anthem. I think that is the appropriate thing to do."
In a show of solidarity and unity, a number of teams have stood and interlocked arms during the NBA preseason.
The NBA has not been silent on the issue. It sent a memo to its players outlining how it plans to help remedy the societal problem in communities.
Silver and the NBA's social responsibility department have been in contact with the players.
"We have had very constructive discussions...about meaningful action that we can take collectively in our communities to help build trust, [for example] between police officers and members of the community looking for constructive ways to address racial injustice, economic injustice," Silver said. "I am very proud of the relationship we have built with the union, with the players on these issues. My expectation is that we'll see into the regular season more of what we have seen in the preseason, which is a sense of, let's deal directly with these important issues."
It seems the league is taking a well-thought-out approach to making practical, sustainable change. Silver is about as woke as any professional sports commissioner we've ever seen. Regardless of your stance on NFL players kneeling during the anthem, you have to respect how Silver, and the NBA at large, have handled this important issue.