Every NBA player who has beef with Donald Trump
It’s safe to say that incumbent United States President Donald Trump is not a popular figure among NBA players these days.
Just a few years ago, NBA champions were thrilled to enjoy the perks of getting to go on a courtesy call to the White House. Back then, it meant exchanging pleasantries with former President Barack Obama — a big-time basketball fan and a beloved supporter of the league.
This trend will likely continue as long as Trump is in power and if he wins his re-election bid in November.
Most NBA athletes’ indifference with Trump boils down to what he represents. The POTUS, after all, built up strong immigration laws and talked about constructing a wall along the U.S.–Mexico border. It also didn’t help that Trump publicly scorned several high profile NBA stars.
Here are players who have beef with Trump.
A lot of athletes had their reservations upon Trump’s inauguration, but they somehow managed to keep those thoughts to themselves.
That is until Donald Trump attacked one of their own in two-time NBA MVP Stephen Curry back in 2017.
During the 2017 NBA Finals, Curry told reporters that he is personally opposed to visiting The White House with Trump in position.
“I don’t want to go. That’s kind of my nucleus and my belief. It’s not just me going to the White House. If it was, it would be a pretty sure conversation. Like I said, it’s the organization, it’s the team,” he said.
Stephen Curry doesn't hold back on whether he'll vote to visit White House. pic.twitter.com/n2PBAtYQdA
— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) September 22, 2017
Curry’s statement soon reached Trump and he responded by “revoking” Curry and the rest of the defending champions’ invitation to Washington D.C.
Going to the White House is considered a great honor for a championship team.Stephen Curry is hesitating,therefore invitation is withdrawn!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 23, 2017
Sure enough, Curry’s Dubs teammate Draymond Green came to his aid an aimed fire at the highest executive in the country.
Still wondering how this guy is running our country…. 🤔🤔🤔
— Draymond Green (@Money23Green) September 23, 2017
This snowballed quickly for Trump, as other players spoke up and denounced Trump’s petty taken-back invitation.
LeBron is never one to back down from political issues and he boldly told Trump what he feels after the whole White House invitation debacle.
U bum @StephenCurry30 already said he ain't going! So therefore ain't no invite. Going to White House was a great honor until you showed up!
— LeBron James (@KingJames) September 23, 2017
James and the Cleveland Cavaliers were the ones taking on the Warriors in the Finals that year. Had they won the chip, James also proclaimed that they won’t be making the trip to D.C.
When Trump made a remark about how NFL players should be fired for disrespecting the flag by kneeling during the national anthem, James once again criticized the highest official in the land.
“He doesn’t understand the power that he has for being the leader of this beautiful country,” he said. “He doesn’t understand how many kids, no matter the race, look up to the president of the United States for guidance, for leadership, for words of encouragement. He doesn’t understand that, and that’s what makes me more sick than anything.”
In a CNN interview in 2018 for the launch of the “I Promise” School, James once again took a shot at Trump.
“He’s dividing us. I noticed over the last few months that he’s used sport to divide us and that’s something that I can’t relate to because I know that sport was the first time I was ever around someone white,” he said.
Trump would then go on Twitter and questioned James’ intelligence.
Lebron James was just interviewed by the dumbest man on television, Don Lemon. He made Lebron look smart, which isn’t easy to do. I like Mike!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 4, 2018
Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan
The late Kobe Bryant also didn’t have much love for the Republican leader. Bryant, who made several trips to the White House during his 20-year NBA career, had this to say.
A #POTUS whose name alone creates division and anger. Whose words inspire dissension and hatred can't possibly "Make America Great Again"
— Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) September 23, 2017
The GOAT Michael Jordan, who is usually mum about political issues, also came to LeBron’s side.
NEW: Jordan sides with James over Trump tweet. NBA legend Michael Jordan tells NBC News through a spokesperson: "I support LJ. He’s doing an amazing job for his community.”
— Geoff Bennett (@GeoffRBennett) August 4, 2018
Another NBA vet irate of Trump’s actions was Miami Heat lifer Udonis Haslem. Like James, UD was also peeved about the President’s remarks on the whole Colin Kaepernick debacle.
“It’s like every time he opens his mouth, it’s like, `Oh, really?”‘ Haslem said. “When you think he can’t say anything like worse, he just kind of figures it out.”
“I don’t think President Trump wants to fight any of them defensive linemen or anybody in the NFL. Probably should just be respectful,” he added.
Young generation speaks up
The young stars of today’s game showed just how “woke” they were when they also used their platform to express their disdain for Trump.
Karl Anthony Towns pointed out that the President has more pressing issues to tend to, while Bradley Beal and Donovan Mitchell went as far as calling him a clown.
So let me get this straight: Flint, MI has dirty water still, but you worried about an interview about a man doing good for education and generations of kids in his hometown? Shut your damn mouth! Stop using them twitter fingers and get stuff done for our country with that pen. https://t.co/sEkX3OKaJM
— Karl-Anthony Towns (@KarlTowns) August 4, 2018
How you gonna withdraw an invite that somebody already said they weren't attending? 🤔🤡
— Bradley Beal (@RealDealBeal23) September 23, 2017
A sign of an insecure human being is one who attacks others to make themselves feel better… im just sad that young kids have to see stupid tweets like these and grow up thinking it’s okay… forget everything else Donald your setting a bad example for kids😑 our future 🤡 https://t.co/eg0MECg8xC
— Donovan Mitchell (@spidadmitchell) August 4, 2018