Jacob Blake was shot seven times in the back by a Kenosha police officer in Wisconsin. Now paralyzed as a result of the shocking and viral moment, the country is once again witnessing racial injustices and police brutality done to the Black community. As a reminder, we are three months removed from the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Prominent voices around the United States continue speaking out about the issues at hand. With the Black Lives Matter movement at the forefront of the NBA restart in Orlando, Florida, superstars like LeBron James spoke loud and clear about how much these social injustices are weighing on the minds and hearts of NBA players quarantined inside “The Bubble.” Just one day after the Detroit Lions canceled practice to protest what happened to Jacob Blake, the Milwaukee Bucks are making waves ahead of Game Five of Eastern Conference NBA Playoffs.
Leading the first round series 3-1 over the Orlando Magic, the Bucks remained in the locker room and did not take the court for pregame warmups. With less than four minutes until the game was supposed to begin, Magic players already on the floor also left the court and returned to the locker room. Shortly after, the game’s officials headed back to the locker room as well.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Bucks are boycotting Game Five, citing the shooting of Jacob Blake.
It’s immediately unclear if Milwaukee intends to play at all. In addition, it’s not known if the NBA will force Milwaukee to forfeit the game, resulting in a loss.
Milwaukee Bucks Boycott Game 5 of NBA Playoffs
This article will be updated as more news becomes available.
UPDATE (4:41 p.m. EST): The Athletic’s Shams Charnia tweeted that Bucks players remain in the locker room and are reaching out to Josh Kaul, the attorney general of Wisconsin. In addition, Magic players are intending on leaving the locker room and will not accept a Bucks forfeit.
Charnia also reported that members of the Oklahoma City Thunder and Houston Rockets are planning to boycott their game on Wednesday night.
UPDATE (4:50 p.m. EST): The Thunder-Rockets game is reportedly being postponed in protest. In addition, multiple reports have surfaced that the evening game between the Portland Trail Blazers and Los Angeles Lakers will likely be boycotted as well.
UPDATE (5:02 p.m. EST): The final game of the day between the Trail Blazers and Lakers has reportedly been boycotted as well, according to The Athletic.
How long this boycott will last is unknown, but NBA commissioner Adam Silver will have a huge decision to make after this historic day.
UPDATE (5:11 p.m. EST): The NBA officially announced that the three games on Wednesday will not be played. In addition, the league announced that all three games will be rescheduled.
A players-only meeting is reportedly in the works to discuss what they plan to do next.
NBA Games Postponed Until Further Notice
“The NBA and the NBPA today announced that in light of the Milwaukee Bucks’ decision to not take the floor today for Game 5 against the Orlando Magic, today’s three games – MIL-ORL, HOU-OKC and LAL-POR have been postponed. Game 5 of each series will be rescheduled.”Advertisement
UPDATE (5:22 p.m. EST): Twitter was flooded with players, current and former, from the NFL, NBA and MLB in support of the trending movement.