Nothing will go smoothly in 2020. Absolutely nothing.
The NBA season is a great example of that. While other leagues seem to be falling apart the NBA's leaders have been the example of how to handle a situation like this. They've been patient. They've been understanding. And most of all they have listened. While other leagues seem to be puffing out their chest and showing their power (*cough* MLB *cough*) the NBA has refrained from making large demanding statements and have instead let the players speak their mind.
When we were originally talking about NBA players coming back the concern was all about safety. How do we keep players safe from COVID? What about muscle tears from lack of usage during this time? And family. If we are locking these players in Disney World can they not see their family for a few months? That's a tough ask.
However, none of those concerns seem to be as important anymore. They are still talked about of course, but it is secondary to fixing the social injustices that are happening in this world. And playing basketball is no where near as important as fixing what is wrong.
Some players seem to believe that the best way to solve these social injustices is by not playing. The thought is that right now, without sports, these injustices are the focal point. When players come back though it will be easy for us to just continue with life as usual and simply put this in the past. This seems to be spearheaded by Kyrie Irving making the plea that players should not come back right now but other big names that have shown their support for not playing such as Dwight Howard and Avery Bradley.
On the other end of the spectrum there are people like Lebron James who are supporting the return of the league. LET'S MAKE ONE THING CLEAR - everyone involved here is on the side of social justice. It is not the importance of social justice that is being questioned. The question is which way is the best to achieve it? Players pushing to come back believe that if they are playing they will be on the national stage and can use that platform to make a change. The whole world will be watching so it may be the best time to get their message out.
As a very white blogger I have thought about what I would do if I was an NBA player. As a fan I am hoping that the league will be back. I am also hopeful that it will and that most of the stars will be in attendance. However, if I was in the league, my response would be to go to my black teammates and ask them what they would like me to do. I don't know what it is like to be black in America. I don't know what impact I can have. But I do know that I value all life and I would certainly value my teammates lives and would like them to know that I will do whatever they think will make change. Kyle Korver had something similar to say:
Again, I hope the NBA comes back but more than anything I want to live in a world where we can all feel safe and I support whatever needs to happen in order to make that a reality.