The NBA playoffs will resume Saturday, but not until players have got the league and its owners to agree to certain social justice plans.
A joint statement by NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and the Executive Director of the NBA Players Association, Michele Roberts, set out these plans on Friday.
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The league and its players immediately form a social justice coalition that includes players, coaches and team owners. “She focuses on a wide range of issues, including improving access to voting, promoting civic engagement and advocating meaningful reform of the police and criminal justice system.” “
Any team that owns and operates its own arena will work with their local election officials to make the arena a voting site for the 2020 general election. When the deadline has passed in certain cities, the owners of that team work with local officials to use the arena for other activities related to voting, such as registering voters.
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The Houston Rockets announced Thursday that the Toyota Center will be used as the voting venue for every voter registered in Harris County.
The league has also agreed to work with players and television partners to create commercials that promote civic engagement in elections and raise awareness of voter access. These ads are used in every NBA playoff game.
In a Zoom videoconference, Thunder Guard Chris Paul, who is also the President of the Players’ Association, said that players “understand the platform we have and that we want to keep our feet on the pedal”.
The joint statement also states: “These commitments follow months of close collaboration in creating a safe and healthy environment for the restart of the NBA season, providing a platform to promote social justice, and creating an NBA foundation that will focused on economically empowering the black community. We look forward to resuming the playoffs and continuing to work together – in Orlando and in all NBA team markets – to push for meaningful and lasting change. “
The bound Rockets Thunder series will continue on Saturday at 5:30 p.m. with Game 5.