Miami Dolphins’ new head coach, Brian Flores, has wasted no time in setting the tone for the team.
A Bill Belichick disciple, Flores understands what it takes to win and knows that in order for that to happen, he has to get the most out of all of his players, pretty much by any means necessary.
This week, a day after Stills criticized Jay-Z for his partnership with the NFL, Flores played eight straight songs by Hov during practice, leading reporters to go nuts over the perceived dig at Stills.
Stills responded accordingly by playing Nas in the locker room, Hov’s principal rival from the late 90s to early 2000s.
There were many thoughts on Flores’ musical selection and timing, ranging from trolling and payback to motivation. Flores remained mum on the situation until last night, when he finally addressed his position and feelings on the issue after the team’s game against the Jaguars.
“I got up in front of the team, and I told them that I support Kenny. I support Kenny, I support the player protests. I mean, quite honestly, they’re bringing attention to my story.
“So, let’s talk about that. I’m the son of immigrants. I’m Black. I grew up poor. I grew up in New York during the stop and frisk area, so I’ve been stopped because I fit a description before. So everything that these guys protest, I’ve lived it. I’ve experienced it.
“So if it’s Kaepernick, or Eric Reid or Kenny, I applaud those guys.”
As he mentioned, Coach Flores is no stranger to the things that these three men continue to take a knee for. He’s a Brooklyn boy from the projects in Brownsville and a son of Honduran parents. He grew up poor and worked hard enough to be accepted into Poly Prep Country Day School, one of New York’s elite private high schools. He graduated from Prep and moved on to Boston College, where he played linebacker for the Eagles from 1999 – 2003.
For Flores, being stopped and frisked was part of growing up in New York. Add that to the experience of being a financially poor Black student at an elite private high school, and you understand why he supports the actions of Kap, Reid, and Stills.
While the music battle between coach and player was funny, the situations and emotions which helped fuel it aren’t, so it’s good to know that Flores isn’t shy or apologetic about his feelings on the issues Black and Brown communities have both faced and continue to face in the age of Trump.