NBA commissioner to ban BLM messages from jerseys, courts

by Jenny Mount · Oct 8th, 2020 3:33 pm

Last Updated Oct 9th, 2020 at 6:42 pm

Black Lives Matter messages will likely not be displayed on the court or on players' jerseys when the NBA returns to play next season, according to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver.

During his interview with ESPN, Silver said that despite the league being "completely committed to standing for social justice and racial equality," how that commitment is displayed is "something we're gonna have to sit down with the players and discuss."

"I would say, in terms of the messages you see on the court and our jerseys, this was an extraordinary moment in time when we began these discussions with the players and what we all lived through this summer. My sense is there'll be somewhat a return to normalcy — that those messages will largely be left to be delivered off the floor," said Silver.

The league has seen its viewership drop dramatically during the NBA playoffs and the NBA Finals, with the playoff ratings down 20% from the previous year. According to a poll, 38% of fans said they are not watching because the league is "too political."

Although nearly all major sports have experienced a ratings decline in 2020, Silver's comments reveal that he is somewhat convinced that the NBA's overt Black Lives Matter messaging is problematic.


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