J.R. Smith knows the NBA is watching what players do before games, but that doesn’t mean he can’t protest scrimmages. Smith told reporters on Friday that he protested before a Cavaliers scrimmage on Monday, and was critical of the flag and its symbolism in the face of athletes protesting to raise awareness of police brutality against people of color.
Smith had previously been critical of LeSean McCoy for calling out Colin Kaepernick’s silent protest, which the quarterback carried out last season. As the sports world became embroiled in anthem controversies thanks to Donald Trump essentially calling Kaepernick a “son of a bitch,” many wondered what NBA players would do on the court. Thus far, the answer is not all that much, but Smith is certainly speaking out.
“I don’t feel like the flag represents what it’s supposed to at this point,” Smith told reporters on Friday.