Celtics And Raptors Players Met To Discuss A Boycott After The Jacob Blake Police Shooting

The Boston Celtics and the Toronto Raptors are slated to square off in a highly-anticipated conference semifinal series. Game 1 is currently scheduled to tip off on Thursday evening, but according to a report by Marc Spears of ESPN, players on both teams have met to discuss a potential boycott of the game.

Spears brings word that players discussed taking some sort of serious measure following the police shooting of Jacob Blake, a 29-year-old Black man who was shot multiple times in the back by police officers as he was getting into his car, where his three children were seated. Blake, whose lawyers say he was attempting to de-escalate an incident when the police arrived, is currently paralyzed from the waist down, and it is not expected that he will be able to walk again.

As Spears reports, the players are putting every potential option on the table, and the expectations that they will discuss next steps on Wednesday night.

Raptors coach Nick Nurse confirmed both elements of this reporting on Wednesday afternoon, adding that some players have discussed leaving the Bubble to go home.

More broadly speaking, Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports reports that the NBPA, including president Chris Paul and vice president Andre Iguodala, are part of discussions about what players can do in response to the incident.

A number of players have spoken out in recent days about the morale around the Bubble following Blake’s shooting. While it is unclear who was part of the conversations that occurred between the two teams, Boston’s Jaylen Brown and Marcus Smart and Toronto’s Norman Powell and Fred VanVleet were candid in media sessions about the situation, saying that the current plan to keep social justice in the public discourse with the hopes of spurring societal change while in the Bubble has been unsuccessful.