LeBron James, Jamal Murray and More 'Demand Change' Amid NBA Playoff Strike After Jacob Blake Shooting

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NBA players are supporting each other as they take a stand and demand justice. Stars like LeBron James and Jamal Murray took to Twitter on Wednesday to express support after the Milwaukee Bucks sat out of their scheduled playoff game against the Orlando Magic in the wake of Jacob Blake's shooting. 

Blake, a 29-year-old Wisconsin man, was shot in the back multiple times by police in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Sunday. Graphic video footage of the incident shows Blake -- who was reportedly trying to break up a fight when police arrived on the scene -- walking away from officers, who have their weapons drawn. 

When Blake approached the driver's side door of a parked SUV, one officer reached out to grab his shirt and fired multiple shots into his back, according to the video. Civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump, who has been retained by Blake's family, revealed in a statement that three of Blake's children -- ages 3, 7, and 8 -- were inside the SUV at the time of the shooting.

Following the Bucks' strike, the NBA announced that Wednesday's three games -- Bucks vs. Magic, Houston Rockets vs. Oklahoma City Thunder and Los Angeles Lakers vs. Portland Trail Blazers -- have been postponed. Game 5 of each series will be rescheduled. 

James -- who has been outspoken on social media about the deaths of Breonna Taylor, George Floyd and more --took to Twitter to express the importance of justice. "F**K THIS MAN!!!! WE DEMAND CHANGE. SICK OF IT," he tweeted on Wednesday. 

The Los Angeles Lakers also released a statement on their players sitting out their game.

"We stand with our players and the players of the NBA in their demand for justice and the end of racial violence. Eighty percent of NBA players are Black men. We cannot love them for the joy and entertainment that they bring to the world, yet sit in silence and fail to use our platforms and resources to amplify their voices when they demand the justice and equality that America has promised us all, but denied Black people for too long," the statement reads. "In 2020 alone, we have been made to bear witness to the killings of numerous unarmed Black men and women at the hands of the police, as well as private 'vigilantes.' Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and now Jacob Blake. We must continue to say their names. But now is also the time for us to say enough."

Additionally, Denver Nuggets player Jamal Murray also tweeted: "WE DEMAND JUSTICE!!!"

Some noted that NBA players' strike came exactly four years after former football star Colin Kaepernick first protested during the national anthem. See more tweets about Wednesday's playoff strike below: 

The NBA has shown its support for the Black Lives Matter movement, with players kicking off the return of the season last month by kneeling and displaying their BLM shirts. 

NBA commissioner Adam Silver said at the time that he respects the "teams' unified act of peaceful protest for social justice and under these unique circumstances will not enforce our long-standing rule requiring standing during the playing of our national anthem."

See more in the video below. 


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