Storyline: Warriors White House Visit

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3 weeks ago via ESPN

Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr said his team still hopes to use its visit to Washington early next year to do something to impact people, but he said he wasn’t surprised when President Trump tweeted last month that the team would not be welcome at the White House. “We had been debating for a couple months what we would do in terms of visiting the White House, if we would or not, how it would unfold,” Kerr said in an interview with former Obama administration adviser Dan Pfeiffer that aired on Monday’s Pod Save America podcast. “We were sorting through it all, but before we could get to anything, the President beat us to the punch. “I don’t think we would have gone. And I think he knew that. Several of us had been very critical of the president in the past year, and it would have been awkward, for sure.”

Magic Johnson made an exception by offering respect to the NBA All-Stars and to the Golden State Warriors after the NBA champions were denied a White House visit they didn’t appear to want. “I was really proud of them. I was very happy,” Johnson told The Undefeated during the Lakers’ media day on Monday. “I can’t say a lot because now people are saying, ‘Oh, Magic is trying to recruit everybody. … ’ But I am proud of them for standing for something.”

He woke up to 20 text messages telling him that choice had been made for him, thanks to President Trump’s tweet that Curry’s White House invitation had been rescinded. “It’s surreal, to be honest,” Curry said after that practice had concluded at the team’s facility in downtown Oakland. “I don’t know why he feels the need to target certain individuals, rather than others. “I have an idea of why, but it’s kind of beneath a leader of a country to go that route. That’s not what leaders do.”
2 months ago via ESPN

“My stance is the same as it was [Friday],” Curry said Saturday. “And even kind of cemented even further about how things in our country are going, especially with [Trump] representing us in a very damaging way. “I don’t know why he feels the need to target certain individuals rather than others. I have an idea of why, but it’s kind of beneath a leader of a country to go that route. That’s not what leaders do.”

James says: “Just giving ya’ll a little bit more in-depth insight about my tweet from earlier. I think it’s basically at a point where I’m kind of just a little frustrated because this guy that we’ve put in charge has tried to divide us once again, and obviously we all know what happened with Charlottesville and the divide that caused. Now, it’s even hitting home for me more because he’s now using sports as the platform to try to divide us. “We all know how much sports brings us together, how much passion it has, how much we love and care, and the friendships and everything that it creates. For him to try to use this platform to divide us even more, it’s not something I could stand for and it’s not something I could be quiet about.

On a more serious note, Kerr — who has been to the White House seven times — said he had always appreciated the experience and was saddened that the current political climate had led to this situation happening. “In general, the idea of going to the White House as part of a championship team is awesome, an incredible honor,” he said. “You honor the office, the institution. I can speak from personal experience. It doesn’t matter, you set aside personal differences. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting with [Ronald] Reagan, George Bush, [Bill] Clinton, George W. Bush, [Barack] Obama. “I didn’t necessarily agree with all of them, but it was an incredible honor to be in their presence. There was a respect for the office and also a respect from not only us, but from the president himself. I think we would, in normal times, very easily be able to set aside political differences, go visit and have a good time. But these are not ordinary times.”

Kyle Wiltjer: In 2012, I was able to visit the White House for being apart of a national championship team. It was a moment I’ll never forget. Not only did I get to go a place with so much history but I got to meet an incredible leader who instilled hope and unity. I’ll never forget when he knew every person on this team on a first name basis, from the starters to the walk ons. It’s a shame that some of these amazing players have to miss out on this opportunity because of the ignorance of the man that is now in charge. Respect to UNC and Golden State for standing up for the values they believe in. 🏀

2 months ago via ESPN

“I’ve talked to a couple of them about it,” Kerr told ESPN. “There are a lot of different dynamics to this and different viewpoints. We’ve got players from all over the world and all over the country, and they’re going to have different perspectives, so I think it’s important for us all to get in a room and hash it out and decide what we want to do. “The league isn’t going to tell us what to do. They know it’s our decision and that, for me, really, it’s the players’ decision.
3 months ago via ESPN

Durant believes the President has played a role in the escalation of racial tension and the public rise of white supremacists. “He’s definitely driving it,” Durant said. “I feel ever since he’s got into office, or since he ran for the presidency, our country has been so divided and it’s not a coincidence. When [Barack] Obama was in office, things were looking up. We had so much hope in our communities where I come from because we had a black President, and that was a first.”

NBA commissioner Adam Silver said that while he doesn’t believe the league should have a say in whether championship-winning teams decide to visit the White House, his personal belief is that they should make the trip if invited. “Regardless of people’s personal, political views, I think that these institutions are bigger than any individual politician, any individual elected official,” Silver said during an interview with Portland Trail Blazers guard C.J. McCollum, which was shared by The Players’ Tribune on Friday. “It concerns me that something like going to the White House after winning a championship, something that has been a great tradition, would become one that is partisan.

The San Francisco-based organization asks its supporters to “Tell the Golden State Warriors: Not one NBA champion at Trump’s White House.” The petition comes in response to coach Steve Kerr’s comments last week on a potential White House visit. Kerr, who has called Trump a “blowhard” and tabbed him “ill-suited” for the presidency in past comments, said last week on the TK Show podcast that he believes it’s “important to consider a potential invitation because I think it could have really positive ramifications if we did go.”
5 months ago via ESPN

Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr said Wednesday that although the NBA champions have not received an invitation to visit the White House, he would urge his players to consider going as a gesture of goodwill. “I would want to make sure the players gave this really a lot of thought,” Kerr told “The TK Show” podcast. “And everybody knows I’ve been a very outspoken critic of [President Donald] Trump, and as a result, maybe we won’t even get the invitation. But I do think it’s very important to consider a potential invitation because I think it could have really positive ramifications if we did go.”
5 months ago via ESPN

He reiterated that stance Wednesday and said, “I think it could make a statement in a time where there’s so much divide and everybody seems to be angry with each other. It might be a good statement for us to go. And to show that, ‘Hey, let’s put this aside, put all this partisan stuff aside and personal stuff aside, respect the institution.'” He added: “Maybe even if you know, if one of you players wants to voice your concerns over what’s happening, what better opportunity to do so. Now, that may be incredibly idealistic. But I would want to at least bring that up with our players as an option rather than just coming out and saying, ‘No way, I’m not going.'”
5 months ago via ESPN

“Somebody asked me about it a couple months ago, the hypothetical, ‘If a championship were to happen, what would I do?’ I answered, ‘I wouldn’t go.’ I still feel like that today. But obviously as a team we’re going to have a conversation. This is a moment we’re going to enjoy together. Nothing should distract from what we were able to accomplish together, the different kind of ceremonies and the tradition. We are a championship-winning team. We don’t want that to taint what we’ve accomplished. We will handle that accordingly and responsibly and do the right thing for us individually and as a group.”

But Steph Curry told reporters Wednesday that while the team will still decide as a group on what they plan to do, he hasn’t changed his stance from what he would like that decision to be. “Somebody asked me about (going to the White House) a couple of months ago, like a hypothetical, if the championship were to happen would I do it and I think I answered ‘I wouldn’t go’. I still feel like that today,” he said. “But, obviously as a team, we’re going to have a conversation.

Though the Warriors quickly issued a statement later Tuesday morning indicating no final decision has been made, not a man in the locker room or in the coach’s office would be comfortable visiting a president who has sowed such division while renouncing civility and from the country’s highest office. “Today is all about celebrating our championship,” said the statement. “We have not received an invitation to the White House, but will make those decisions when and if necessary.”
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November 19, 2017 | 8:03 pm EST Update