Milwaukee Bucks Boycott Game 5 of Playoff Series in Wake of Jacob Blake Shooting; All League Games Postponed Tonight
There will not be a Game Five of the Milwaukee Bucks’ first
round playoff series with the Orlando Magic – at least not tonight. The Bucks
are protesting the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha and did not take
the floor for today’s playoff game against Orlando in the NBA bubble. Today’s
game was set to tipoff at 3 pm.
A statement released by the NBA says the league and the NBA
Players association have agreed to postpone all of tonight’s scheduled playoff
games in light of the Bucks’ decision to not take the floor. Houston was set to
play Oklahoma City and the Los Angeles Lakers were set to play Portland in
other playoff action tonight. All of the games will be rescheduled.
The Bucks did not speak with the media in Orlando this
afternoon, spending the better part of three hours in their locker room. This
evening, the team did make a statement – calling for justice for Jacob Blake, that
the police officers involved in the shooting be held accountable, and calling
for action from state legislatures. You can watch video of the statement here.
Alex Lasry, the team’s Senior Vice President said in a post on Twitter
“Some things are bigger than basketball. The stand taken today by the players and
org shows that we’re fed up. Enough is enough. Change needs to happen. I’m
incredibly proud of our guys, and we stand 100% behind our players ready to
assist and bring about real change.”
The Orlando Magic also released a statement about today’s
events, which read “Today we stand united with the NBA Office, the National
Basketball Players Association, the Milwaukee Bucks and the rest of the league condemning
bigotry, racial injustice and the unwarranted use of violence by police against
people of color.”
National media sources are reporting NBA players are set to meet
tonight to discuss how to proceed after today’s boycotts. Three games are on
the schedule tomorrow (Thursday), but there is still uncertainty on whether those
games will go on as scheduled.