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Phil Jackson doesn't want to mix basketball, politics

May 17, 2010, 5:30 PM EDT

The Lakers have Los Lakers jerseys, but they will not be wearing them. As we told you before, the Lakers are not going to play your immigration law games.

Phil Jackson said later that he didn’t see what the big deal was with the law, or why teams should become involved and protest. That, of course, led to protests outside Staples Center tonight from people who think the Lakers should make a statement against the law.

In response, Phil Jackson released a statement today on the issue.

“I’ve been involved in a number of progressive political issues over
the years and I support those who stand up for their beliefs. It is what
makes this country great. I have respect for those who oppose the new
Arizona immigration law, but I am wary of putting entire sports
organizations in the middle of political controversies.

“This was the message of my statement. I know others feel
differently, even in the Lakers organization, but it was a personal
statement. In this regard, it is my wish that this statement not be used
by either side to rally activists.”

The biggest blow the Lakers could make Arizona? Beat the Suns.

  1. Fed up - May 17, 2010 at 9:49 PM

    I for one am fed up with this political BS interfering with Pro Basketball or Girls High School Basketball. Illegal, undocumented, kidnappers, drug runners, or gang banging rapists sneaking into America have nothing to do with sporting events. The Federal Government needs to protect America. If that opinion or wanting to make our borders secure makes me a racist then I am happy to state “I am a proud racist”.

  2. Ron - May 18, 2010 at 12:19 AM

    We watch sports to get away from the stresses of everyday life. Sports is about entertainment.
    I have my own feelings about the Neanderthals who wrote and implemented that mean-spirited law, usurping the role of the federal government for political gain.
    But I don’t give a **** about it when I am watching basketball. Period.

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