July 6, 2020 | 7:59 pm EDT Update
July 6, 2020 | 6:12 pm EDT Update
July 6, 2020 | 5:16 pm EDT Update
While Brissett is happy to be back on the basketball court, the Raptors could be centralized in Florida — one of the world’s hotspots for the novel coronavirus — for the next three months, with no chance of seeing family until the second round of the playoffs tip off on Sept. 1. “I knew that the opportunity that we had to get back here together as a team, I was going to jump on it right away, no matter what the circumstances were,” Brissett said. “Obviously it’s tough leaving my daughter, but FaceTime and all those things that are available now, I call her all the time and I’m on the phone with her, just talking to her. It wasn’t a tough decision to leave, but getting on that plane and saying bye, that was the toughest part.”
Bill Russell: In December of 1956, already two months into the season because I was competing in the Olympics, I began my career as a Boston Celtic. The team had had a Black player before me, Chuck Cooper, but when I arrived, I was the only Black person on a team of white guys. The Boston Celtics proved to be an organization of good people––from Walter Brown to Red Auerbach, to most of my teammates. I cannot say the same about the fans or the city. During games people yelled hateful, indecent things: “Go back to Africa,” “Baboon,” “Coon,” “Nigger.”
I used their unkindness as energy to fuel me, to work myself into a rage, a rage I used to win.
Bill Russell: In the 1960s, I tried to move to Wilmington, MA, but nobody would sell me a house. So, I moved my family to Reading, a predominantly white town 16 miles north of Boston. Bigots broke into the house, spray-painted “Nigga” on the walls, shit in our bed. Police cars followed me often. I looked into buying a different house in a different neighborhood, but people in that neighborhood started a petition to persuade the seller not to sell to me. Around this same time Medgar Evars was murdered by the KKK. His brother, Charlie, asked me if I would do a series of integrated basketball clinics for children, which I did. I marched in Washington, supported Ali. After that, the death threats started coming. I said then that I wasn’t scared of the kind of men who come in the dark of night. The fact is, I’ve never found fear to be useful
July 6, 2020 | 5:06 pm EDT Update
July 6, 2020 | 4:57 pm EDT Update
It took a lot of time and information to persuade McCollum to play, and it still wasn’t an easy decision. Much more than getting into the playoffs, he’s worried about his health and that of his teammates. “I don’t know how much interactive fun I’ll have from a safety standpoint,” McCollum said. “I think it’s best to stick to yourself if I’m being honest.
Stay in my room, FaceTime, talk to my family, read some books, play some video games, drink some McCollum Heritage 91 and keep it moving. I don’t really plan on mingling too much, especially to start, because one false negative could be the end.”
July 6, 2020 | 4:45 pm EDT Update
Twelve first-time participants are entered in the field, including Canelo Alvarez, Chauncey Billups,
Chace Crawford, Eddie George, Cooper Kupp, Patrick Mahomes, Brian McCann, Brandon McManus, Troy Mullins, Michael Pena, Andre Reed and Chase Utley.
July 6, 2020 | 4:27 pm EDT Update