Beverley took to Twitter to voice his opinion amid the recent back and forth about resuming the season.
“Hoopers say what y’all want. If [LeBron James] said he hooping. We all hooping. Not Personal only BUSINESS. #StayWoke,” Beverley wrote.
— Patrick Beverley (@patbev21) June 14, 2020
Kyrie Irving Believes NBA Resuming Would Distract From Social Issues
James’ former Cleveland Cavaliers teammate Kyrie Irving organized a call with more than 80 other NBA players on Friday to discuss the NBA restarting inside the bubble of Disney’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando. Irving firmly believes the season restarting would distract from the social issues our country currently faces.
“I don’t support going into Orlando,” Irving told the players. “I’m not with the systematic racism and the bull—-. Something smells a little fishy. Whether we want to admit it or not, we are targeted as black men every day we wake up.”
James was a noticeable absence on the call. According to The Athletic’s Sam Amick, the four-time NBA MVP believes that he can continue to inspire change while playing basketball.
“Because sources say James, whose Lakers have as good a chance at the title as any of the 22 teams invited to Walt Disney World, believes playing in Orlando won’t deter his ability to continue inspiring change,” Amick wrote. “He wants to keep making his mark off the court. He wants to play basketball. And as has always been the case, he clearly believes he can do both at the same time.”
James’ teammates Dwight Howard and Avery Bradley have been among the players voicing that the NBA returning might not be the best course of action.
Dwight Howard statement, provided by his agent, to CNN: pic.twitter.com/sk9uSSHlpp
— Jill Martin (@ByJillMartin) June 14, 2020
“European colonization stripped us of our rich history, and we have yet to sit down and figure us out. The less distractions, the more we can put into action into rediscovering ourselves,” Howard said as part of a statement released on Saturday to CNN. “Nations come out of families. Black/African American is not a nation or nationality. It’s time our families became their own nations. No basketball till we get things resolved.”
LeBron James Has Actively Contributed to Social Justice Causes
James is the most powerful and popular player in the NBA, so Beverley probably isn’t too far off with his assumption. James is seeking his fourth, legacy-booting NBA title and his Lakers are the favorite to win the title at +200.
But that doesn’t mean James hasn’t been actively contributing to social justice causes. In fact, he’s been one of the most active in the sports world, lending his voice to a variety of causes and even opening the I Promise School in his hometown of Akron, Ohio specifically aimed at at-risk children.
Most recently, James and other celebrities started the More Than a Vote organization, which is meant to increase African-American registration and turnout while educating voters on their rights and protections.
“We feel like we’re getting some ears and some attention, and this is the time for us to finally make a difference,” James told the New York Times. “Hopefully, someday down the line, people will recognize me not only for the way I approached the game of basketball, but the way I approached life as an African American man,” James told the New York Times.