The Houston Rockets and the Oklahoma City Thunder will boycott their playoff game on Wednesday evening. The news comes via Shams Charania of The Athletic, and soon after, the NBA announced that all games on Wednesday will be postponed and rescheduled.
Decision made. Thunder and Rockets are boycotting Game 5, sources said. https://t.co/SCNAjsQYea
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) August 26, 2020
All games are postponed, and Game 5 of each series will be rescheduled, NBA says.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) August 26, 2020
The two sides were slated to tip off their game after Game 5 between the Milwaukee Bucks and the Orlando Magic. However, prior to tip in that game, Bucks players refused to come out of their locker room, followed by the Magic players heading back into their locker room. It was soon announced that the game would be boycotted by the two sides.
There had been plenty of conversation over the last few days about how players viewed playing basketball following the police shooting of Jacob Blake, a 29-year-old Black man in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Blake was shot in the back multiple times as he was getting into his car, where his three children were sitting. According to a report, while the Bucks were in their locker room, they were attempting to contact the Wisconsin attorney general.
Multiple players mentioned how difficult it was to focus on basketball following the shooting, with players on the Boston Celtics and Toronto Raptors meeting to discuss a potential boycott ahead of Game 1 of their Eastern Conference Semifinal series that tips off on Thursday. There is no word on whether the teams previously scheduled to play on Wednesday consulted with one another ahead of their decisions.