NBA players have been using their media time in the Orlando bubble to call attention to issues that are important to them, and that has only gotten more intense over the past week. Wednesday’s wildcat strike to protest systemic racism and police brutality after the police shooting of Jacob Blake made a huge impact, and the players are continuing to follow through on their promise to highlight vital and urgent issues.
Jamal Murray of the Denver Nuggets used his media time on Saturday to call attention to Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old EMT who was shot by police while sleeping in her bed, and George Floyd, whose murder at the hands of the Minneapolis Police set off national protests in late May. Murray wanted to highlight the injustice of Taylor and Floyd’s deaths on Saturday.
He placed his custom Breonna Taylor and George Floyd shoes on his chair, and let them sit there for nearly two minutes before answering questions.
Jamal Murray started his media availability today by setting his custom shoes on his stool for the first two minutes or so. They simply sat there, alone, in silence, in the frame.— Katy Winge (@katywinge) August 29, 2020
Breonna Taylor & George Floyd. pic.twitter.com/FQl37jqkGv
Murray later explained why he decided to do that.
Jamal explained to the media his intent behind the shoes sitting there for two minutes.— Katy Winge (@katywinge) August 29, 2020
"One person on those shoes had a knee on his neck for 8." https://t.co/EHdKpzc8Ju
Jaylen Brown speaks about Jacob Blake
Jaylen Brown of the Boston Celtics chose to speak about the shooting of Jacob Blake and the “criminalization of Black people” in the U.S. Blake was shot in the back by police seven times after attempting to break up a fight, and is now paralyzed from the waist down.
Celtics guard Jaylen Brown, who is also a VP of the NBA’s players union, with perspective on the meetings and his frustration with “the criminalization of Black people.” pic.twitter.com/ohkQBHqbrM— Mark Medina (@MarkG_Medina) August 29, 2020
“I feel like there’s an interest in the criminalization of Black people in this country. Jacob Blake was shot in the back seven times and he’s handcuffed to a bed right now, as a reminder. It’s a reminder to the nurses, it’s a reminder to his family, to the staff, as if being paralyzed wasn’t reminder enough. It doesn’t make sense, to be honest.”
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