After a war of words between Stephen Curry and President Donald Trump, it looks like the Golden State Warriors won't be visiting the White House to celebrate their championship despite what the National Basketball Association commissioner and the Warriors head coach wanted.
On Friday, during a speech in Alabama, the president called for athletes who protest during sporting events to be fired.
Several NFL players lined up to condemn Trump. The Warriors announced they vote as a team whether to attend the White House, as is tradition for champions from all sports. The story is based on an ESPN interview where many players on the Golden State Warriors said they're against visiting the White House to celebrate the team's recent championship. The conflict peaked Sunday with Trump's remarks, which had the effect of uniting a newly minted opposition coalition that included a growing number of players and coaches, as well as some owners who have backed the president. "So therefore ain't no invite", James tweeted.
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But African Americans are a large majority in the National Football League, and made up almost all the 130 players who knelt, sat or raised a fist in defiance before or during Sunday's NFL games.
He was among the CEOs that stepped down from the president's American Manufacturing Council in August to protest the president's response to violence in Charlottesville, Virginia. Trump's reaction was, of course, to un-invite Curry on Twitter-as if waiving the retracted invitation in front of the world's eyes.
It's unclear if Trump's tweet was directed at the entire team or just Curry.
"The NFL and our players are at our best when we help create a sense of unity in our country and our culture", he said". For a week, (that owner will) be the most popular person in this country because that's a total disrespect of our heritage. I guarantee things will stop, " he said. "We all have to kind of stand as one the best we can".
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Among the many National Football League figures who were moved to comment: Seahawks players Richard Sherman and Michael Bennett, Broncos lineman Max Garcia, 49ers owner Jed York, New York Giants owners John Mara and Steve Tisch, Packers boss Mark Murphy, the players association and commissioner Roger Goodell.
He added that there is "nothing more divisive than politics" and said he supported players' "right to peacefully affect social change and raise awareness in a manner that they feel is most impactful".
National Football League owners collectively donated more than $7 million to Trump's presidential campaign, and New England Patriots Owner Robert Kraft gave Trump a Super Bowl ring this summer.
"We don't stand for basically what our president. the things that he said and the things that he hasn't said in the right terms that we won't stand for it, " Curry said. Because of the differences that exist in the country, the president made it really, really hard for us to honor that institution. The Warriors released a statement saying it was disappointed it hadn't been given the chance to discuss its decision before Trump made it for them, and, when they traveled to Washington to play the Wizards on February 28., would not visit the White House and, "constructively use our trip to the nation's capital" to "celebrate equality, diversity and inclusion - the values that we embrace as an organization".
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