A few months ago, it wasn't known whether the NBA was going to play a 2020 playoff season or not. Thanks to the NBA "bubble" in Walt Disney World, fans are now getting to see their teams back on the court.
The Orlando Magic and the Milwaukee Bucks made it to the playoffs and were set to play Game 5 of their series on Aug. 26 when it was announced the game would be postponed. Why is the Bucks game delayed? The answer to that is serious.
Why is the Bucks vs Magic game on Aug. 26 delayed?
NBA players made a strong statement on Aug. 26 when the Bucks were supposed to play Game 5 in their playoff series against the Orlando Magic. Instead of walking out to the court when the game was scheduled to start, the Milwaukee Bucks didn't take the floor as a statement of protest against racial injustices — particularly standing up against the police shooting of Jacob Blake.
ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski and The Athletic's Shams Charania said, according to their sources, the Bucks have decided to protest the injustices seen across the country by not playing in the game. The other two NBA games scheduled for the same day — Thunder vs. Rockets and Blazers vs. Lakers — reportedly will also not be played.
Players for Orlando Magic had taken the floor, as well as the referees, but the Bucks never showed up. It didn't take too long for arena staff and all others on the floor to leave as well.
A statement released by General Manager for the Bucks Jon Horst said the team is "not coming out for awhile. There will be a team statement."
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— Alex Lasry (@AlexanderLasry) August 26, 2020
Senior Vice President for the Bucks and son of the team's owner Alex Lasry shared his support of the team in a statement 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."
More athletes are voicing their support and more games have been boycotted.
Following the Bucks' lead, the Houston Rockets, Oklahoma City Thunder, Los Angeles Lakers, and Portland Trail Blazers have all announced that they will be boycotting as well, effectively postponing the games that they were also scheduled to play today.
Although they had initially not intended to boycott, the Orlando Magic did release a statement, saying, "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.”
However, the Bucks-led boycott didn't end with the NBA. The Milwaukee Brewers also postponed their game against the Cincinnati Reds on Aug. 26. Prior to the decision to postpone the MLB game, Reds manager David Bell said, "There's clearly things that are going on that are so much more important than what we're doing."
If you are looking for ways to donate your time or money to Black Lives Matter and other antiracist organizations, we have created a list of resources to get you started.