Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban won’t be upset if any of his players join Colin Kaepernick and others who are kneeling during the national anthem.
Speaking with CNNMoney, Cuban expressed his support for Kaepernick’s protest.
“[O]f all the ways you could protest, you could throw a bomb, you could shoot a gun, you could throw a punch, you could start a protest, you could try to start a riot, you could shoot somebody, he took a knee,” Cuban said.
“And now he’s started a huge conversation about what it means to be American, what it means to be proud to be an American, what it means to salute the flag, because he took a knee.”
The NBA currently has a rule that states players must stand for the anthem. It’s a rule that was put to the test back in 1996 when Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf refused to stand for the anthem. Then-commissioner David Stern suspended Abdul-Rauf for his choice.
This rule will almost certainly be put to the test this upcoming NBA season when many players could potentially kneel for the anthem. In light of the ongoing police violence towards people of color in America, Kaepernick’s protest has gained serious momentum around the nation.
If Mavericks players join in the protest, they will have Cuban’s blessing.
“Just make sure you understand what you’re saying and make sure you’re willing to stand up to it and make sure your teammates know so it’s not a surprise to any of them.”
From the high school level, all the way up to pro sports, players have taken up the protest. The NBA might be wise to amend its rule as a preemptive measure to avoid what could be a widespread violation of the rule this season.