NBA world reacts to jury finding Derek Chauvin guilty in murder of George Floyd

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A jury found former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin guilty of second- and third-degree murder, as well as second-degree manslaughter, for his role in the death of George Floyd last year.

Reactions poured in from players and teams around the NBA in the wake of the Chauvin guilty verdict, with both a sense of justice being served, but many also focused on this verdict being one step down a long road to real justice and equality. NBA players and teams again expressed their commitment to long-term social justice.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and Players’ union Executive Director Michele Roberts released this joint statement:

“George Floyd’s murder was a flash point for how we look at race and justice in our country, and we are pleased that justice appears to have been served. But we also recognize that there is much work to be done and the National Basketball Association and the National Basketball Players Association, together with our newly-formed Social Justice Coalition, will redouble our efforts to advocate for meaningful change in the areas of criminal justice and policing.”

From the Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx:

“One year ago, George Floyd was murdered, causing unimaginable pain and trauma for his family, the Minneapolis community, and communities across the nation. Our deepest thoughts have been with the Floyd family since this unjust tragedy. Throughout our history, racial and social inequalities have been ingrained in our society. We are hopeful that today’s decision will serve as a step forward, but it does not ease the physical and emotional pain that continues in an environment where systemic racism exists. To our BIPOC community, the Timberwolves and Lynx remain committed to influencing change, promoting impactful action, and using our platform to help heal and unite in pursuit of liberty and justice FOR ALL.”

A statement from the Milwaukee Bucks:

“The Bucks organization is encouraged that justice was served by the Derek Chauvin verdict in the horrific murder of George Floyd. While this decision provides accountability to this police officer for his heinous crime, we must continue to address police officers’ excessive use of force and immediate escalation when engaging with people of color.

“Reoccurring examples of deadly use of force by police officers have become common place, including in our backyard of Kenosha, Minneapolis and so many other parts of the country.”

From the Atlanta Hawks:

“Today, inside a courthouse in Minneapolis, our nation saw legal justice served. While this verdict can never fully bring solace to the loved ones of George Floyd, it is a start in their healing and that of the entire Black community that continues to grieve his loss and countless others at the hands of senseless brutality. Last summer, the Hawks made a commitment to stand against racism and injustice and to continue denouncing the broken systems that contributed to this moment. We remain committed to being a part of the solution and using our platform to move us toward a more accepting, anti-racist society.”