Houston Rockets' star shooting guard James Harden was slammed on social media after he posted a picture of himself wearing a "Thin Blue Line" mask in his return to the NBA.
Although teams reported to Orlando last week to prepare for the resumption of the NBA season, Harden did not travel with the Rockets on suspicion that he had contracted coronavirus.
Upon his return on Thursday, the Rockets' Twitter account posted a picture of Harden wearing a mask with a popular pro-police symbol with the caption, "Mask Up."
The NBA also shared an image of Harden donning the controversial mask.
The sharp shooter received immediate backlash on social media.
Despite the criticism, some defended Harden's actions, claiming he probably was not aware of the statement he was making.
Although Harden is not outspoken concerning political issues, he did tell reporters on Thursday that he believes in the protests sparked by the death of George Floyd.
"The way the city just like rallied, it was amazing. I think the world saw it," he said. "The march and everything that we're standing for is very powerful."