Kobe Bryant: ‘I Would Be Kneeling During National Anthem If I Were Still In The NBA’ (VIDEO)
Unlike the NFL, the NBA has strict rules that state all players have to stand for the National Anthem. And no one dared to test those rules while the NFL was going through its controversies.
Kobe Bryant recently stated he would’ve been the first NBA player to participate the Anthem protests if he were still in the league. During an interview with “The Undefeated,” Bryant was asked whether he would have participated in the peaceful protests. He had this to say:
“I would have participated in it for sure,” he said.
“I’m sure I would have gotten some flak for it, but that’s fine.”
Bryant had the same message that former San Francisco 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick delivered when he first started kneeling during the 2016 season—that “police brutality needs to stop.”
“I think we understand this is a free country. I think we have the right to peaceful protest,” he said during the interview.
“From my point of view, that’s what the flag represents as well, the ability to speak … and everybody’s entitled to that.”
— The Undefeated (@TheUndefeated) February 12, 2018
Commissioner Adam Silver sent out a memo last year reminding players of the rule that requires players and coaches to stand for the national anthem. He did not go into specifics on whether or not a player would be penalized for not standing.