The Golden State Warriors, fresh off winning the 2017 NBA championship, have unanimously voted to skip their customary White House visit, per reports (that have yet to be confirmed). If true, this would mark an unprecedented political decision from a sports entity. However, if the Warriors do indeed decide to skip their visit, it would come as no great surprise given how Steve Kerr and many of the players have spoken out against the current administration throughout the season.
NBA champion Warriors skipping the White House visit, as a unanimous team decision per reports.— Downtown Josh Brown (@ReformedBroker) June 13, 2017
The Golden State Warriors voted unanimously to skip their entire visit to Donald Trump's White House.— Shaun King (@ShaunKing) June 13, 2017
As woke as any team in sports.
Again, the Warriors themselves have not confirmed the reports, so we don’t know for sure that this is happening. They very well could have made the decision last night or this morning, but don’t want to announce yet.
Of course, teams are in new territory these days. By potentially taking this type of stand, the Warriors are only staying true to what they’ve said in regards to Trump since the election. If they do indeed decide to skip their visit, it would not be surprising.
David West has long been a critic. In a January 23rd article on CSN Bay Area, he was quoted as saying:
“He brought out an element of our society that a lot of folks assumed was dead. A lot of folks assumed that that part of our country was no longer, based on the election of President Obama. But what Donald Trump did was, he reached for a demographic of people who responded to some of the most infantile, non-decent language that you could expect coming from a president candidate. Folks bit.
All the tactics that he used to get elected are the very things that someone like me, who works with youth on a consistent basis, are the things that we try to talk our young folks out of being,” West said. “We try to talk our young people out of being bullies. We try to talk our young men out of disrespecting women. We try to talk our young people into being accepting of other people’s opinions and other people’s walks of life.
And he is the complete opposite of all of that.”
Steve Kerr, who should run for office with Gregg Popovich in 2020, also came out forcefully against Trump’s travel ban when it was first (unsuccessfully) implemented.
Steve Kerr gives his candid thoughts on the Muslim Ban. pic.twitter.com/ex1CI7Ob3d— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) January 30, 2017
“As someone whose family member is a victim of terrorism, having lost my father — if we’re trying to combat terrorism by banishing people from coming to this country, we’re really going against the principles of what our country is about, and creating fear. It’s the wrong way to go about it. If anything, we could be breeding anger and terror, so I’m completely against what’s happening. I think it’s shocking. I think it’s a horrible idea and I feel for all the people who are affected, families are being torn apart. And I worry about the big picture, what this means for the security of the world. It’s going about it completely opposite. You want to solve terror, you want to solve crime. It’s not the way to do it.”
Stephen Curry even took a shot at Trump. After Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank praised President Donald Trump, calling him a "real asset" to the nation, Steph quipped, "I agree with that description, if you remove the 'et'" from asset.”
Not only did he burn Trump, but he also made a point of telling Under Armour he was not pleased by their actions.
"If there is a situation where I can look at myself in the mirror and say [Under Armour doesn’t] have my best intentions, they don't have the right attitude about taking care of people. If I can say the leadership is not in line with my core values, then there is no amount of money, there is no platform I wouldn't jump off if it wasn't in line with who I am. So that's a decision I will make every single day when I wake up. If something is not in line with what I'm about, then, yeah, I definitely need to take a stance in that respect."
Given the Warriors’ extended and sustained criticism of Trump, it’s not surprising that they’re now reportedly taking the ultimate stand by refusing to even visit him. It would be yet another slap in the face for an already embattled administration which is, granted, dealing with far worse and far more troubling legal issues than a sporting team not visiting them.
However, if the Warriors really wanna really get under his skin, they might consider doing this:
Wanna piss off trump and his minions? Go visit Obama instead and present him a jersey with 44 on it. Again. pic.twitter.com/egWhNuwafh— Ben in LA® (@bilarichfield) June 13, 2017
We’ll wait to see how this all plays out. For now, all we have are unsubstantiated reports and rumors. But, given what everyone has already said, if it does come out, officially, that they have decided not to visit, it would not be shocking.
NY Daily News writer Shaun King, whose tweet we embedded above, wrote a piece explaining how the sources may have jumped the gun, though most likely the Warriors would still not, in fact, visit the White House.
That's partly why I was so damn pumped when I read a tweet this morning from a CNBC contributor stating that the team, after clinching the NBA championship Monday, had unanimously agreed that they wouldn't be visiting Donald Trump's White House. The team, according to later reports, has not yet received an invitation or made a formal decision on whether they will be doing a photo op with Trump.
After seeing the mixed messages, I reached out to my friends with the team and got absolute clarity. The players, coaches, executives and investors I know all made it abundantly clear that under no circumstance would they be visiting Donald Trump's White House now, or later, for any photo ops. Without fail, they each told me they were just speaking for themselves, and that the team would be making an official statement. That statement has since been released and says, "Today is all about celebrating our championship. We have not received an invitation to the White House, but will make those decisions when and if necessary."