J.B. Bickerstaff on the NBA Strike and Racial Justice

The NBA Show


Us today is the head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers. Also, the greatest interim head coach and the history of basketball. He is now three for three. With the Houston Rockets, the Memphis Grizzlies at now the Cleveland Cavaliers interim turned head coach J., B. Bickerstaff. Thanks for coming on with us. Man I appreciate it I guess that's an honor to say. Then the greatest coach of all time but I appreciate you having me man. Looking forward to the conversation so. What were you thinking last night as the Milwaukee, bucks don't take the floor and it becomes a reality that. There's not going to be a playoff game and then we see the way it plays out through the evening. We saw your tweets couple of them went viral by the way Jay bickerstaff on twitter. Now love that but you really some poignant words to say and so I just take me through your day and experiencing that somebody in the NBA. You know they did a good job of keeping their thoughts to themselves and it was really a surprise. You know normally something like that is GonNa get out you know but they did a great job of keeping it to themselves organizing it in making it a powerful statement You know I can't speak enough about the power of their voices and what it means to communities and people all over the world and all of our country for sure So you know it's a powerful statement and that's what people don't what some people don't want to give credit where credit is due Did, not know the outcome of what was going to happen. You. Know they didn't know what their sacrifice could possibly lead to as far as repercussions from the League or from TV ESPN fans whatever it may been, but they still had the courage to do it. And that says a lot. It says how important it is to and how important it should be to all of us. What do you think? How do you think you would have handled it because to hear it coaches were still getting ready for that game players really kind of did this on their own in the locker room and it's within an hour of game. and. So I'm sure you can attempt to relate to the coaches and kind of what was going on. If you put yourself in that position, how do you think would have played out because I can only match the stress of Getting Ready for a playoff game is is something already and then you walk in and your player said, we're not playing tonight. And I think the first thing is you show support this isn't something has popped out of the Blue I'm sure that there have been a ton of conversations with bud in his guys about the circumstances he's got some very powerful guys and you saw what George Hill Janas. Had to say how it's impacted them. In, affected down extremely difficult way. So I'm sure they've had some conversations. But in that moment you show support you know you ask questions. You help guide or whatever the plan may be but you're there as a resource, a tool because again, you're not getting in the way of. Two, powerful a moment. It means too much a this time in our society what's going on? So you're there as a resource a shoulder to lean on if they need it. It seems to me that minor standing from talking to players and coaches and exects. Slow last day is that it is clear that the bubbles as a success in terms of quality of play in terms of health and safety. But a lot of people fail that it's been a failure on the league's part in terms of capitalizing the fact that everybody's there twenty two teams started there now thirteen remaining and it's been a failure to creatively find ways to take advantage of this platform. I mean. To me yesterday that Jaylen Brown tweets out that he wants to leave to go protests and the feeling is that he should be able to make more of an impact being from the bubble and utilizing that platform and player seemed to be a frustrated with the fact that they can't creatively use that platform right now and it seems to me like everything that happened yesterday is just the players taking that into their own hands to accelerate this. And I think that's what the players do. Right I think when all these things happen and you know the players lead nothing best. What's the most fantastic part of this is you know we are looking for voices in our society to push us over No human being has more influence or larger platforms than are NBA players. So we expect them and we're depending on them to lead us. They're leading US where our so called leaders have failed us. They're trying to pull us all together and it's for the right reasons. You know what? I mean this isn't a selfish caused. This isn't a divisive 'cause of this is a cause for equality and humanity of everybody should be able to get on board with and we need their voices in their platform. And we'll follow suit.

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