San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich criticized NFL commissioner Roger Goodell for his lack of actions against racial discrimination. Popovich felt Goodell “folded” to President Donald Trump.
When Colin Kaepernick protested kneeling to the American flag in 2016, he said he would not respect a country where racial discrimination prevails. Four years later, the whole nation is protesting against racial discrimination in the wake of George Floyd’s death. It brought back references to Kaepernick’s protests in 2016.
Recently, NFL star Drew Brees got some backlash when he said Kaepernick had disrespected the national flag when he protested. However, he quickly apologized for his comments.
San Antonio Spurs coach criticized Goodell
It was only last week that Goodell released a statement saying he was wrong in not paying heed to the earlier protests.
“We, the National Football League, condemn racism and the systematic oppression of black people,” Goodell said. “We, the National Football League, admit we were wrong for not listening to NFL players earlier and encourage all to speak out and peacefully protest.”
Popovich felt that Goodell was intimidated by President Trump.
“A smart man is running the N.F.L. and he didn’t understand the difference between the flag and what makes the country great — all the people who fought to allow Kaepernick to have the right to kneel for justice,” Popovich told the New York Times. “The flag is irrelevant. It’s just a symbol that people glom onto for political reasons, just like Cheney back in the Iraq war.”
“He got intimidated when Trump jumped on the kneeling” and “he folded.”
“It’s got to be us that speak truth to power, that call it out no matter the consequences. We have to not let anything go. Our country is in trouble and the basic reason is race.”#SpursVoices pic.twitter.com/uTyOIzGnTg
— San Antonio Spurs (@spurs) June 6, 2020
Popovich has previously raised his voice on Floyd’s death. After the video of a policeman kneeling Floyd came out, Popovich said he was embarrassed as a white person. He called for action against racial discrimination and said everyone should speak out.
Popovich has been one of the longest-serving coaches in NBA. He has been the coach of San Antonio Spurs since 1996. Under him, the Spurs have played in the playoffs in each of the seasons. He is only one of the five coaches in the NBA to have won five titles and has the most number of wins.