Amid More Racial Strife, Clarity Elusive For NBA As New Workweek Begins

Is the NBA going to resume its season? That question is on the minds of all basketball fans as the workweek begins.

Clarity was elusive over the weekend as more NBA players took to social media to vent their frustrations with the conditions in the United States regarding racial disharmony, a situation that was amplified with the killing in Atlanta of Rayshard Brooks.

Just when it seemed like the return of the NBA season was set in stone, word surfaced earlier this week that Kyrie Irving of the Brooklyn Nets is leading a movement to have players refuse to participate in the resumed season in Orlando.

On Sunday morning, NBA spokesman Mike Bass told Marc Stein of the New York Times
NYT
that the league is working to address the concerns raised by Irving and others.

With Wall Street looking as though it was about to have a manic Monday, and with coronavirus cases increasing in areas of the United States that have opened up for business again, there was no telling what the day would bring Monday on the basketball front and with society in general.

The craziness that has defined the year 2020 showed no signs of abating.

The NBA has said it plans to reopen at the end of July with 22 teams competing for the playoffs. There is supposed to be a double-elimination format involving ninth-place teams facing eighth-place teams, with all of this taking place in Orlando at World Disney World.

But the unsettled conditions related to race relations and coronavirus have made everything unpredictable — aside from the outrage being expressed from all corners of The Association.

On Saturday, Spurs coach Gregg Popovich was quoted by revered New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd criticizing NFL commissioner Roger Goodell for caving to Donald Trump in the past on the issue of player protests during the national anthem.

“A smart man is running the NFL and he didn’t understand the difference between the flag and what makes the country great — all the people who fought to allow [Colin] Kaepernick to have the right to kneel for justice,” Popovich told Dowd. “The flag is irrelevant. It’s just a symbol that people glom onto for political reasons …”

He added that Goodell “got intimidated when Trump jumped on the kneeling [and] he folded.”Popovich has been an outspoken critic of the president and has been vocal in condemning racial injustice in the United States following the death of George Floyd in police custody last month. Earlier this month, Popovich said the “country is in trouble” in a video released by the Spurs.

Popovich has been an outspoken critic of the president and has been vocal in condemning racial injustice in the United States following the death of George Floyd in police custody last month.

Earlier this month, Popovich said the “country is in trouble” in a video released by the Spurs.

The belief of whether or not the country is in trouble is sometimes skewed by people’s political beliefs, and the United States is now a divided country as the November presidential election nears.

The NBA is a window onto that division, and the week ahead — if the past week is any indication — promises to be as confusing as the past 14 weeks have been since much of the country shut down because of coronavirus.

Fasten your seatbelts.

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