With teams beginning to arrive in Orlando, the NBA’s bubble is coming together and a few reporters are already embedded at Disney World for the proceedings. Though full-fledged basketball action won’t arrive until later in July, news is beginning to emerge and, on Tuesday evening, Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports provided details on the social justice messages that a few players will be donning when play begins.
Earlier in July, the NBA’s approved list of messages came to light and Haynes, citing sources, indicates that Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert will have “equality” on his uniform, with Portland Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum choosing “education reform.”
— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) July 8, 2020
As Haynes notes, Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic will showcase “equality” in his native tongue and details will undoubtedly emerge across the league in the coming days. The NBA is pledging to “drive action and create meaningful and generational change” as a “central goal” of the restart in Orlando, and the display of these messages, along with painting Black Lives Matter on the court, is in line with that mission.
Haynes does indicate that some players are “disgruntled with the lack of options” provided by the NBA but, at the same time, he does remind observers that this was bargained between the league and the NBPA. On the WNBA side, players will wear the names of women who were victims of police brutality but, for the NBA, players have the option of one of 28 phrases.