NBA Commissioner Doesn’t Support Players Boycotting White House Visits
NBA commissioner Adam Silver believes that players choosing to skip out on visiting the White House during Trump’s administration, whether they support him or not, would be a “lost opportunity.”
Several NBA players, including Cleveland Cavaliers superstar LeBron James, have expressed uncertainty about visiting the White House while Donald Trump is president. Silver believes any player who chooses to do that would be making a huge mistake.
“To me, if a player were to choose not to go to the White House, whether they were choosing not to go to the current White House or a future White House, my response would be: ‘That’s a lost opportunity,'” the NBA commissioner said. “Because that’s an opportunity that most citizens who have a political point of view would kill for–the opportunity to directly tell the president of the United States how they feel about an issue.”
“Now, if the president were to say, ‘I have no interest in what members of the NBA think about an issue,’ that might surprise me and I might have a different response,” Silver added. (RELATED: 2016 NBA Champion Cleveland Cavaliers Honored At The White House)
James and the 2016 NBA Champion Cavaliers were the last NBA team invited to the White House during Obama’s presidency, but if they win during Trump’s presidency some of the players said they would consider denying the invitation.
James refused to stay at the Trump Soho in Manhattan with his team when the Cavaliers visited the New York Knicks earlier this season. He also publicly endorsed Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton during the presidential election.
No matter the players’ politics, Silver still believes they should visit the White House while Donald Trump is there.
“The institution is bigger than any one man, whether that man be President Obama or President Trump. Ultimately players have to make their own decisions. But if they were seeking my counsel, my counsel would be that they should go to the White House if offered the opportunity.”