The Lakers made the playoff this season for the first time since the 2012-2013 season and advanced past the first round for the first time since 2011-12. Signing LeBron and doing whatever it had to do to bag Anthony Davis is proving to be gold for the Lakers in these Disney Bubble playoffs
While these guys continue to make noise on the court during their ring chase, LeBron’s off the court heroics are already championship caliber.
The past week has been a historic whirlwind of events, with NBA players standing in solidarity with the Milwaukee Bucks who decided to go on strike following the shooting of Jacob Blake by Kenosha, Wisconsin cops.
The rest of the sports world followed, but the lights, camera and the course of action were all NBA-driven. LeBron James, Chris Paul, Michael Jordan, NBPA Executive Director Michele Roberts, and other impactful voices navigated the conversation and eventually decided to resume the NBA playoffs tonight, with activism as an equally important component.
LeBron James continued to shine on the court, adding another playoff triple-double, his 13th, to his total (36, 10 and 10).
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) August 30, 2020
After the game, the focus immediately switched to the social justice movement and the passionate discussions and empathic actions that took place this past week, culminating in a coalition between the NBA and NBPA. The sides created a list of initiatives that center around Increasing voting access, promoting civic engagement, and advocating for police and criminal justice reform.
The players didn’t agree to return to action until that initiative was put into place.
“It’s great when you can put together a plan and have action executed,” said LeBron after the game. “That’s what we’ve been able to do over the last few days. With solidarity, we stood with our brothers in Milwaukee. What’s going on with their situation…in their hometown (Jacob Blake shooting). We stood with them as a league and then we put together a plan and we had action and we want to continue that
It’s great to be back on the floor, but more importantly, it’s better to have a game plan and be able to execute it and be able to put it into action right away.“
LeBron was one of the leading voices in the discussions over the last few days. He took a strong leadership role and initially the Lakers and Clippers were the only teams that voted to boycott the rest of the playoffs. Bron says he changed his stance once he was satisfied with the plan going forward.
“There was some doubt (that we would return to play),” Bron said. “But when you’re able to put together a plan that can change the landscape of what’s going on right now on and off the floor, then you have more clarity, I have more clarity and every player in this league has more clarity on us going forward with the initiative that was put together
Thanks to NBA players who have risked their livelihood and paychecks to utilize the power of their platform. Staples Center will now be a voting center leading up to November 3 and other arenas are expected to follow.
“For us to be able to have the NBA arenas as polling sites for a lot of communities is unbelievable and we want to continue that,” Bron said. “November is right around the corner and we all know how big that is.”