The Golden State Warriors may be NBA champions, but the customary White House visit will be missing a key team member, who refuses to meet with President Trump. His excuse: “I don’t respect who’s in office right now.”
The Warriors have yet to receive an official invitation to the White House, but when they do, one of their star players will not be going. Kevin Durant, the reigning NBA Finals MVP and former league MVP, has been an outspoken critic of the President for some time, and when asked if he would participate in a likely White House visit, he said he would decline.
“I don’t respect who’s in office right now,” he said.
Durant’s statements came in an interview with ESPN on Thursday, but he also gave a quick interview to TMZ, and took his criticism to a vulgar level, stating he “doesn’t f**k” with the President’s words and actions. Video of that exchange is below.
This is not the first time President Trump has had to deal with athletes boycotting a White House visit. Several members of the NFL champion New England Patriots refused to attend the White House ceremony after their Super Bowl win, including Martellus Bennett. When the Chicago Cubs visited the White House, however, player boycotts were less of an issue.
Pro basketball star Kevin Durant grew up near Washington, D.C., but he’s in no rush to visit the White House if he and his teammates on the NBA champion Golden State Warriors get invited.
“Nah, I won’t do that,” Durant said Thursday, in an interview with ESPN. “I don’t respect who’s in office right now.”
It has become a tradition in the U.S. for championship teams to visit the sitting president, as baseball’s Chicago Cubs did in June when they met with President Trump.
But the outspoken Durant — who recently apologized for negative comments about India after conducting a basketball clinic in the country — accused Trump of helping to divide the U.S. rather than unite it. He added that many of his Warriors teammates feel the same way, the Washington Times reported.
“I don’t agree with what he [Trump] agrees with, so my voice is going to be heard by not doing that,” Durant said about declining a possible invitation to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. “That’s just me personally, but if I know my guys well enough, they’ll all agree with me.”
During a “Kevin Durant Day” parade in Maryland, Durant added that Trump had made hate “fashionable again,” with comments about last week’s violence in Chalottesville, Va., TMZ reported.
Also on Thursday, Kevin Durant gave this interview to TMZ about the President, stating that he “doesn’t f**k with him.” Here is the video. Warning: there is some graphic language.
It is no wonder that the NBA is suffering a loss of viewers like the NFL. As more players are going politically liberal, more viewers are tuning out.
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