As NBA training camps open around the country, the Memphis Grizzlies are dealing with the same dilemma other sports teams are dealing with: How to respond to the growing concern of sports and politics.
The Grizzlies as an organization, and point guard Mike Conley, are not shying away from it.
Conley addressed the issue head-on at Media Day when asked about his feeling about President Donald Trump calling out NFL players, and any other athletes, who don't stand for the national anthem.
"This is something the team is not condoning." Conley said. "We share an empathy with what the NFL Players are going through over what the President said. If anything, it's brought a lot of the guys off the fence, so to speak, to really get involved and try to show that we are resolved, and we will stand together. We as an organization are not representing what the President said. And we are trying to show we are about unity and equality."
Conley, a 2-time NBA Sportsmanship Award winner, said dialogue on the humanity that we all share is more important than symbols or actions, like taking a knee, or standing for the anthem.
Grizzlies Head Coach David Fizdale, who has been a proponent of civic awareness and action, said he would kneel during the national anthem if the team decided to do so.
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