Players for the Knicks and the Rockets locked arms during the national anthem on Tuesday to show support for protests regarding police shootings. No individual player chose not to stand during the anthem prior to Tuesday’s tip-off in the pre-season opener.
Via the New York Daily News:
The Knicks talked about making a gesture symbolizing togetherness during the national anthem. And at their first opportunity this season, they brought together both benches for a unified stand.
Prior to Tuesday’s preseason opener in Houston, Carmelo Anthony and Joakim Noah reached out to members of the Rockets to arrange a joint gesture, with 34 players from both teams standing side-by-side with arms around shoulders.
The stars of both teams — Anthony and James Harden – were interlocked until the end of the anthem, with the line of players extending on the sideline from one bench to the other. They all bowed their heads.
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick sparked similar protests among some athletes when he first chose not to stand and later knelt during the national anthem as a means of protesting police shootings.
The league reportedly reached out to the NBA player’s union to discuss meaningful ways they could compromise on the issue while respecting First Amendment rights. Some teams have launched collective gestures. The Celtics held hands on Tuesday.
When players plan to protest black-on-black crime in say, Chicago, remains unclear.
What do you think of these demonstrations? Respectful? Inappropriate? Effective or a waste of time? What say you?