Stephen Curry and LeBron James may be rivals on the court — the NBA sees it that way, they and their respective teams are headlining the Christmas Day games — but when it comes to speaking out on social issues, Curry has LeBron’s back.
Days after LeBron helped open the “I Promise” school for the most at-risk youth in his hometown of Akron, President Donald Trump Tweeted out an insult aimed at both CNN reporter Don Lemon and the intelligence of LeBron. Other NBA players came to LeBron’s defense, as did big names like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and even First Lady Melania Trump.
The day before teeing off in the Web.com Tour’s Ellie Mae Classic at TPC Stonebrae, Curry was asked — again — about his reaction to Trump’s Tweet and told Logan Murdock of the Mercury News:
“Frustration,” said Curry, who will participate in Ellie Mae Classic Thursday. “That rhetoric is all based in some longstanding racism in terms of black men with a voice in power. Unfortunately, that’s being revealed more and more as the days go on.”
Curry is spot on with this.
Maybe Trump’s Tweet played well with his base, but it’s not going to have an NFL-style impact on the younger, more urban, and more diverse NBA fan base. The League will back its players, who it encourages to speak out on social issues. And those players have a very different power dynamic with NBA team owners than the one in the NFL. For Trump, there is no win here.
By the way, Curry shot a one-over-par 71 on the first day of the Web.com event, leaving him eight strokes off the lead heading into Day 2. His goal was to make the cut, which means he needs a strong Friday.