It’s been a simmering topic all offseason: Will the Golden State Warriors — a team with a coach and several players who have publicly criticized President Donald Trump — make the traditional champions visit to the White House?
The first question is will they be invited? As of this point, that has not happened, according to the team.
However, this is something the Warriors plan to discuss and vote on as a team, coach Steve Kerr said. Stephen Curry was clear he plans to vote “no.”
Curry was more clear ESPN’s The Jump with Rachel Nichols.
“Obviously, you don’t wanna rush to a decision on understanding the magnitude of what this means. We have an opportunity to send a statement that hopefully encourages unity, encourages us to appreciate what it means to be American, and stand for something. So whatever your opinion is on either side, that’s what we wanna take advantage of this opportunity…
(Nichols asks if the statement would be not going): Yeah, for me, that’s gonna be my vote when we meet with the team. But it is a collective, it’s not just me, it’s not just KD, it’s about the whole team and what we were able to accomplish as a team, and the opportunity that has historically been afforded to championship teams. So we’ll have that conversation obviously, and we’ll do it as a group, and we’ll have one voice.
Some sports figures did not attend the traditional White House event in the past when Barack Obama was president (even if Tom Brady wants to deny that’s why he bailed), but teams have not skipped it.
There is a philosophical question here: If one opposes the president’s policies/actions, do you make more of a statement by skipping the event or going and saying something while there? What the Warriors know (having done these before) is this is just a feel-good photo-op event designed to make the president look good (whichever president). It’s a pure PR event, like the president welcoming the girl who sold the most Girl Scout cookies or something similar. The president shakes hands and makes a couple of jokes, the team gives him a jersey with his name on it, and photos are taken. It’s not a place for serious discussion and statements, traditionally. The Warriors can either upend tradition by saying something while there, or they can just decide not to play the game.
It sounds like they are leaning toward the latter.
Which begs the question, will the Warriors even get an invite?