Gregg Popovich — a United States Air Force Academy graduate and coach of USA Basketball’s national team — along with his assistant Becky Hammon became the latest people to choose to stand for the national anthem during the NBA’s restart.
However, unlike Jonathan Isaac of the Orlando Magic, both wore Black Lives Matter T-shirts.
Asked about why postgame, Popovich said:
“I’d prefer to keep that to myself. Everybody has to make a personal decision. The league’s been great about that; everybody has the freedom to react any way they want”
Popovich’s star guard DeMar DeRozan said people should not “vilify” either Popovich or Hammon for standing.
“With Pop and Becky standing, I have no thoughts [contrary to] belief in them that is all out of genuine, out of a positive side of their heart,” DeRozan said after finishing with 27 points and 10 assists in the Spurs’ 129-120 win over the Kings in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. “Same way we kneel. Don’t take away nothing from those guys.
“You know Pop speaks out. When it comes to Becky, she’s been [on the] front line, fighting for equality since I’ve been a fan of hers playing in the WNBA. So everybody has their own right of making a statement and you can’t vilify nobody for not doing what the other group is doing. I’m all for it.”
Here’s how social media reacted to it: