Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban thinks the free-agent quarterback’s protest of “The Star-Spangled Banner” would’ve been embraced if he played in the NBA, saying that many basketball players have been supported by the league when voicing their political views.
“I don’t know what his status is in the NFL, but I’m glad the NBA doesn’t have a politician litmus test for our players,” Cuban told Rick Maese of The Washington Post. “I’d like to think we encourage our players to exercise their constitutional rights.”
A number of NBA teams staged their own protests during last year’s preseason, linking arms with one another in solidarity during the American national anthem.
“The NBA is such a global game,” Cuban wrote in an email, as quoted by Maese. “I think our players exposure to different political systems among their teammates may help them appreciate our country even more and encourage their participation.”
While NBA commissioner Adam Silver has often been supportive when his players take public stands on social issues, he said prior to last year’s regular season that standing for the national anthem was “the appropriate thing to do.”
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