NBA reminds players they must stand during anthem

The National Basketball Association sent a memo to teams last week from Commissioner Adam Silver reminding them of the league policy that requires all players to stand during the playing of the national anthem.

But the memo also had several suggestions about what the teams could do in lieu of a kneeling or sitting protest.

Associated Press:

In the memo, obtained by The Associated Press, Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum suggested teams use their opening games “to demonstrate your commitment to the NBA’s core values of equality, diversity, inclusion and serve as a unifying force in the community.”

He recommended an address by a player or coach to fans before the anthem, or a video featuring players or community leaders speaking about important issues and showing photos from past community events.

The league’s preseason schedule begins Saturday with two games, including the NBA champion Golden State Warriors hosting Denver.

Tatum said the league supports and encourages players to express their views on matters that are important to them, while reminding of the rule that players, coaches and trainers stand respectfully for the anthem.

“The league office will determine how to deal with any possible instance in which a player, coach or trainer does not stand for the anthem. (Teams do not have the discretion to waive this rule),” the memo says.

The memo builds on discussions held by the NBA’s Board of Governors this week, and follows up on one Silver and players association executive director Michele Roberts sent to players recently.

It recommends that teams organize internal discussions to hear the players’ perspectives, if they haven’t already, and to start or expand programs within their communities.

“The players have embraced their roles in those efforts and we are proud of the work they do in our communities,” Tatum wrote.

The long standing policy is clear on the issue:

The policy came about because of a protest in 1996 by then Denver Nuggets player Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf:

The rule was tested by then-Denver Nuggets guard Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf in 1996, when he made the decision to sit during the playing of "The Star-Spangled Banner." The NBA suspended Abdul-Rauf for one game, and when he returned he stood for the anthem, but closed his eyes and prayed silently into his hands.

It will be interesting to see if any players challenge the rule by sitting or kneeling during the anthem once the season gets underway. But given all the ways that teams will be able to push their agenda anyway, it doesn't seem likely.

 

 

The National Basketball Association sent a memo to teams last week from Commissioner Adam Silver reminding them of the league policy that requires all players to stand during the playing of the national anthem.

But the memo also had several suggestions about what the teams could do in lieu of a kneeling or sitting protest.

Associated Press:

In the memo, obtained by The Associated Press, Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum suggested teams use their opening games “to demonstrate your commitment to the NBA’s core values of equality, diversity, inclusion and serve as a unifying force in the community.”

He recommended an address by a player or coach to fans before the anthem, or a video featuring players or community leaders speaking about important issues and showing photos from past community events.

The league’s preseason schedule begins Saturday with two games, including the NBA champion Golden State Warriors hosting Denver.

Tatum said the league supports and encourages players to express their views on matters that are important to them, while reminding of the rule that players, coaches and trainers stand respectfully for the anthem.

“The league office will determine how to deal with any possible instance in which a player, coach or trainer does not stand for the anthem. (Teams do not have the discretion to waive this rule),” the memo says.

The memo builds on discussions held by the NBA’s Board of Governors this week, and follows up on one Silver and players association executive director Michele Roberts sent to players recently.

It recommends that teams organize internal discussions to hear the players’ perspectives, if they haven’t already, and to start or expand programs within their communities.

“The players have embraced their roles in those efforts and we are proud of the work they do in our communities,” Tatum wrote.

The long standing policy is clear on the issue:

The policy came about because of a protest in 1996 by then Denver Nuggets player Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf:

The rule was tested by then-Denver Nuggets guard Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf in 1996, when he made the decision to sit during the playing of "The Star-Spangled Banner." The NBA suspended Abdul-Rauf for one game, and when he returned he stood for the anthem, but closed his eyes and prayed silently into his hands.

It will be interesting to see if any players challenge the rule by sitting or kneeling during the anthem once the season gets underway. But given all the ways that teams will be able to push their agenda anyway, it doesn't seem likely.

 

 

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