Bucks boycott Game 5; NBA postpones all Wednesday games
Milwaukee players did not take the floor for the 3:00 pm tipoff in Orlando, Florida
ORLANDO, Fla. (WBAY) - The NBA has postponed all of Wednesday’s games in the wake of the Milwaukee Bucks boycotting their game against the Orlando Magic on Thursday afternoon.
The Bucks boycotted Game 5 of their first round NBA Playoffs series to protest the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin, earlier in the week.
Sterling Brown and George Hill read aloud a team statement.
The NBA says Game 5 will be rescheduled, meaning Milwaukee won’t forfeit the game.
The Bucks team owners issued a joint statement on the boycott:
“We fully support our players and the decision they made. Although we did not know beforehand, we would have wholeheartedly agreed with them. The only way to bring about change is to shine a light on the racial injustices that are happening in front of us. Our players have done that and we will continue to stand alongside them and demand accountability and change.”
The team was not present on the court as the scoreboard countdown struck 0.0. It remains to be seen how the NBA will react to the boycott. The Bucks had held a 3-1 series lead and could have closed out the series with a win on Wednesday.
Guard George Hill reportedly told reporters in Florida: “We are tired of the killings and injustice.”
Before the boycott, many Bucks players and coaches had spoken out after the Jacob Blake shooting.
“Watching stuff that happened in Wisconsin the other day really breaks my heart,” Hill said. “We are down here playing in the bubble to do things for social justice and to see it still going on, and us still playing the games like it is nothing is a really messed up situation.”
“We had a great talk today before our film with Coach Bud leading, giving us a few minutes to say what is on our minds,” said Brook Lopez. “A lot of guys: Wes, Vin Baker, and others brought up good points. The most important thing and the consensus was not being complacent in these times.”
“There is nothing more important than getting social justice and getting the wrongs that are going on in our country right and creating real lasting change,” said coach Mike Budenholzer. “There is literally nothing more important.”
The Bucks players are not expected to make any comment today according to General Manage Jon Horst, who says there will be a team statement.
Bucks Senior Vie President Alex Lasry tweeeded: “Some things are bigger than basketball. The stand taken today by the players and org shows that we’re fed up. Enough is enough. Change needs to happen. I’m incredibly proud of our guys and we stand 100% behind our players ready to assist and bring about real change.”
According to Shams Charnia of The Athletic, the Rockets and Thunder plan to boycott their playoff game today as well.
The Brewers Josh Hader said boycotting MLB games is something the team will discuss.
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