NBA players’ last names can be replaced with a social justice message, word or phrase from an approved list during the games when play resumes.
According to ESPN, the NBA and National Basketball Player’s Association, the league’s player union, agreed to 29 words and phrases that can be displayed on a player’s jersey, above their number, in the space where their last name is typically located.
The approved list, released over the weekend, includes “Anti-Racist,” “Ally,” “Say Her Name,” “I Can’t Breathe,” “Enough,” “Black Lives Matter,” and “How Many More” (see full list below).
“The messages will be displayed for the first four nights of resumed play,” The Blaze reported Sunday. “After those games, a player can replace the approved word or phrase with their last name. However, if they want to continue displaying the social justice message, their name will be placed below their number.”
Players will be allowed a first and second choice, ESPN reported. If a player chooses not to use a word or phrase from the approved list, their last name will be displayed as usual.
The messages will be displayed for the first four nights of resumed play. After those games, a player can replace the approved word or phrase with their last name. However, if they want to continue displaying the social justice message, their name will be placed below their number.
Presumably the phrases will generate new jersey sales for fans of the respective player.
The NBA also announced that “Black Lives Matter will be painted on both sides of the courts in Walt Disney World arenas, where the league will play once the COVID-induced delay is over.
“The league and the players are uniquely positioned to have a direct impact on combating systemic racism in our country, and we are committed to collective action to build a more equal and just society,” NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said. “A shared goal of our season restart will be to use our platform in Orlando to bring attention to these important issues of social justice.”
- Black Lives Matter
- Say Their Names
- I Can’t Breathe
- Power to the People
- Justice Now
- Say Her Name
- Sí Se Puede (Yes We Can)
- See Us
- Hear Us
- Respect Us
- Love Us
- Listen to Us
- Stand Up
- I Am A Man
- Speak Up
- How Many More
- Group Economics
- Education Reform