Professional sports have become a bastion of wokeness.
Left-wing politics are front and center on the playing field.
And NBA legend Phil Jackson pointed out one truth that left Democrats seething with rage.
The National Basketball Association (NBA) has embraced left-wing politics, alienating many of its fans.
Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James, the face of the league, symbolizes the left turn taken by the NBA.
Unlike superstars from prior generations, James can’t wait to weigh in on the latest political controversy with his ill-informed, woke opinion.
The increasingly woke politics of the NBA is turning off one Hall of Fame coach.
Phil Jackson is one of the most decorated coaches in NBA history with a record 11 championships with the Chicago Bulls and the Los Angeles Lakers.
As a former NBA player and coach, Jackson spent his life immersed in professional basketball.
Jackson said during an interview on the Tetragrammaton with Rick Rubin podcast, that the NBA has become so political he doesn’t watch it anymore.
He said that in 2020 the league was trying to cater to a “certain audience” and alienated longtime fans as a result.
“I am not enjoying the game,” Jackson said. “That’s too bad. There’s a whole generation that doesn’t like the game.”
The NBA became overly politicized in 2020 in the aftermath of George Floyd’s death according to Jackson.
When the NBA restarted its season during the pandemic in 2020, the season was finished in a “bubble” in Orlando, Florida.
The woke virtue signaling took off when the players and coaches were locked down to protect themselves from the virus.
“All the teams that could qualify went down there and stayed down there, no audience, and they had things on their back like ‘Justice’ and a funny thing happened,” Jackson said. “They made a funny thing like, ‘Justice just went to the basket and Equal Opportunity just knocked him down.’ My grandkids thought that was pretty funny to play up those names. I couldn’t watch that.”
NBA players were allowed to swap out the names on the back of their jerseys for social justice slogans in the bubble shortened season.
Slogans used by players included “Black Lives Matter” and “Peace.”
Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard used “How Many More” to go with his number zero jersey, a reference to over sensationalized police violence.
Left-wing slogans like “Black Lives Matter” were put on the court and players were allowed to kneel before the national anthem.
“It was trying to cater to an audience or trying to bring a certain audience to the game, and they didn’t know it was turning other people off,” Jackson said. “People want to see sports as non-political. Politics stays out of the game. It doesn’t need to be there.”
Jackson’s former player Michael Jordan, the biggest star in basketball history, stayed out of political controversies.
Jordan noted that, “Republicans buy sneakers too.”
The NBA’s woke political agenda cost it a legendary player and coach as a fan.