Utah Jazz guard Jordan Clarkson was among them, as he gathered with family members, friends, even some old teammates to join a march in Los Angeles for what he called “a big moment in time.”
And for those who argue that such “politics” have no place in the league, that sports are intended to be a haven, a place to escape from the harsh realities of the world, well, he’s got a simple, straightforward reply.
“Everybody that’s saying ‘Shut up and dribble,’ maybe they should shut up and go look at themselves in the mirror,” Clarkson said Sunday morning in a Zoom conference call with local and national media.
“Something’s got to change. This is a problem that everybody’s noticing,” Clarkson said. “… Really think to yourself, ‘Man, it is something wrong.’ You got to face it.”
“I would say about the Orlando stuff, it isn’t an ideal situation for us to go play right now,” Clarkson said.
“I want to go hoop,” Clarkson said. “I’m bored sitting at home and I’m ready to go back to work, for real.”
He’s hopeful that some other work can continue there as well. The NBA has already announced plans to have “Black Lives Matter” adorn the courts used in the games in Orlando. Players can also have their surname on the back of their jersey replaced by one of several specific phrases associated with the current racial/social justice movements.
Clarkson, though, is eager to see his peers and colleagues continue to speak out.
“I know a lot of players have agendas and things that they want to put out, using the platform in Orlando,” he said. “And it’s a plan that has to be executed well, so that everybody can get the message. Everybody can still be affecting and still changing, making this happen.”