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Mavericks, Spurs mulling how to protest Donald Sterling

Apr 28, 2014, 3:22 PM EDT

Tim Duncan, Tony Parker Tim Duncan, Tony Parker

Should the Clippers players boycott games in light of the allegations against Donald Sterling?

It’s a question unfairly pinned on 14 players.

Why don’t the Warriors boycott? Or any of the NBA’s other teams? After all, their owners are in business with Sterling, too.

The Clippers players are stuck either sacrificing their own professional aspirations or playing for Sterling, and there’s no easy answer to that conundrum.

Yesterday, the Clippers players balanced their competing emotions with a visual protest in Game 4 against the Warriors. They turned their warm-up shirts inside out, dumped their warm-up jerseys at mid-court and wore black socks and armbands during the game.

Other players around the league want to show their solidarity, including the Mavericks and Spurs for tonight’s Game 4. Tim MacMahon of ESPN:

“Unfortunately, we don’t have black socks right now,” Mavs forward Shawn Marion said. “We don’t wear them. We haven’t ever worn them since I’ve been here. We want to do something. We’re going to figure out something to do if we can’t get some socks.”

The Spurs wear black socks for every road game, but they could come up with another anti-Sterling gesture.

“I don’t know to what degree something like that is going to be orchestrated or done, but you can believe that all of us feel what everybody else is feeling,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. “The degree to which you show that is a good question. But we all feel the same way. It’s not just inappropriate, it’s disgusting. It’s something that has to be handled. We have full faith that the NBA will react appropriately.”

Last night, the Rockets and Trail Blazers made similar gestures.

The Trail Blazers players obviously didn’t dump their warm-ups in protest of their own organization. They were just following the Clippers players’ lead and showing their support. The Rockets wear black socks with their road jerseys, anyway, but players switched to black accessories.

The NBA’s owners and Adam Silver have the most power here. It’s up to them – not the league’s players – to act.

But it’s good the players are coming together and making themselves heard, using their influences on Silver and the owners.

  1. azarkhan - Apr 28, 2014 at 3:35 PM

    As a Spurs fan, I think the Mavericks should forfeit the game in protest.

    • 5xchamp24 - Apr 28, 2014 at 5:35 PM

      If i could give you 10 thumbs up, i would but its not because im a Spurs fan. Your comment just made me LOL

  2. sellahh - Apr 28, 2014 at 3:37 PM

    I’m goddamn afraid of opening the fridge in awe of seeing Donald Sterling news.

    • heat256 - Apr 28, 2014 at 4:06 PM

      Donald Sterling doesn’t want you to bring your black licorice to his games. You can like it, but don’t make a public show of it.

  3. savvybynature - Apr 28, 2014 at 3:42 PM

    As a Spurs fan, I hope they are spending every ounce of energy preparing and thinking about the game tonight, not Donald Sterling.
    I’m glad they all spoke out against his reprehensible behavior when asked, but tonight’s game is about wanting to advance in these playoffs, period. I’d hope every player is against racial injustice every day, not just when they wear black socks.

  4. antistratfordian - Apr 28, 2014 at 3:55 PM

    Black socks or accessories etc. would literally be the least they can do, so they might as well not even do that. That’s not the sort of action that speaks louder than words. For other teams a thoughtful comment before or after the game should suffice.

    But if I were a player – especially a Clippers player – I would probably do something much more significant in protest.

    • Bbmokc - Apr 28, 2014 at 5:10 PM

      These guys are not going to do a damn thing! They are a bunch of over paid individuals and they want their money, because they can’t make it any other way! It is one of the highest paid jobs, along with many other sports where you don’t use your brain, and you don’t even need a damn degree! I think it sends the wrong message to youth that learning is unimportant and all they have to do is learn to jump, shoot, run and/or tackle to be something in life!

      I wonder what is the percentage of NBA players that really hold an EARNED college degree? I would bet a lot of money that the majority of them are given! I also wonder how many of them can even carry on a quality conversation using correct English. We won’t even begin to touch writing, as that is a whole different ball of wax, and “X’s” do not qualify!

      • antistratfordian - Apr 28, 2014 at 5:20 PM

        Well I would prefer having any sort of conversation with them than with you. But you sound like you’re full of envy. Hey, it’s not their fault your life didn’t turn out the way you thought it would.

        I hope your luck turns around soon, pal.

      • 5xchamp24 - Apr 28, 2014 at 5:38 PM

        You must be one of Donald Sterlings friends

      • calkinsrob - Apr 28, 2014 at 6:06 PM

        Getting a degree doesn’t necessarily make you smart. Kobe never went to college and hes one of the smartest guys in the league. No doubt smarter than you. Doesnt Kobe know like 3 different languages? very cool haha.

  5. nicofthenorthstar - Apr 28, 2014 at 3:59 PM

    “Oh no!!! Not black socks!!!”, said Donald Sterling as he counted the profits from his NBA team.

    • scoops1 - Apr 28, 2014 at 4:25 PM

      I think the NBA would have a real problem on their hand if they were socks made by Champion or Adidas….

      that would send a message

    • spursareold - Apr 28, 2014 at 4:53 PM

      KIA – we’re taking this back
      State Farm – we’re taking this back
      Virgin America – We’re taking this back
      CarMax – We’re taking this back
      Red Bull – We’re taking this back

  6. rcali - Apr 28, 2014 at 3:59 PM

    I kind of find it hard to believe that any player protesting has never said anything bad about any other race or religion. I’d bet on it.

    • worldbfree4me - Apr 28, 2014 at 4:12 PM


      “Never have so few (NBA PLAYERS), Owed so much to so many (NBA OWNERS)”

      These players are human beings, and they are sinners just like society as a whole. For example, I often wonder when will People of color finally get their 40 acres and a Mule as promised! Is that bad?

      Bottom line, none of that has anything to do with what Donald Sterling has said recently or has done over the years.

  7. worldbfree4me - Apr 28, 2014 at 4:03 PM

    The NBA’s owners and Adam Silver have the most power here. It’s up to them – not the league’s players – to act.

    Not true, the Fans have the most power! But will a clueless fan who spent $500 for a playoff ticket, simply tear it up and not show up for a game? Doubtful! The #CLIPPERS players are truly the only group that can make a statement and that’s by Winning the Tournament and then using that platform to say something intelligent and profound about today’s society including an Owner like Donald Sterling or fake Cowboy like Cliven Bundy.

    • floridascuba1 - Apr 28, 2014 at 4:56 PM

      You have no idea what you are talking about in regards the Bundy incident. Not only was he baited, the tape was heavily edited. So only fake guy is you. Since you can’t distinguish facts yourself.

    • Bbmokc - Apr 28, 2014 at 4:56 PM

      Act on what?? There is NOTHING to act on! You guys crack me up! What is the big deal with him saying he does not like black people? What is the big deal with him saying he does not want black people at his games??? So What! He has every right to his opinion – we all have one or more!

  8. lowercasejay - Apr 28, 2014 at 4:36 PM

    This article uses “Silver” where “Sterling” should be referenced. Multiple times.

    That said – the money for playoff tickets have already been paid. The players would get FINED for not playing as well as loose a chance to win the series they worked hard to reach. They did nothing wrong.

    The Owners can do something (largely quiet).
    The advertisers can do something (and some are).
    Silver can do something (and he will).
    The fans could cancel season tickets for next season.

  9. Bbmokc - Apr 28, 2014 at 4:54 PM

    Oh Good Grief!! Now I see what all the uproar is about! 98.9% of the NBA are black guys so everyone is up in arms! Who cares that he does not want blacks at his game! Get over it! Sponsors stop sponsoring, people boycotting the games, WHY?? So What???? I hate to tell you guys this – but there are many more that don’t like black people! Imagine That! Just because someone does not like a particular race – it is NOT a crime! And it is also not a crime to voice it!

  10. rdrfan - Apr 28, 2014 at 5:26 PM

    They sure don’t have trouble taking his money. If they wanna protest don’t take the racist’s money then

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