Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers Reportedly Vote to Boycott Rest of NBA Season

The “wildcat strike” began after the playoff games scheduled for August 26 were postponed.

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The Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers have reportedly voted to boycott the remainder of the NBA season after the shooting of Jacob Blake.

Sharms Charania of The Athletic and Stadium reports that the two LA-based franchises were the only teams who voted to end the season early; all the other teams voted to continue. Lakers star LeBron James walked out of the meeting and was followed by the rest of his team and the Clippers after Miami Heat PF Udonis Haslem brought up the question of how the season was meant to continue without the two teams.

During talks, sources claim that the Milwaukee Bucks‘ George Hill admitted that he was the first to initiate the conversation about the walkout during their game against the Orlando Magic. James then mentioned that he wants owners “to be more involved/take action.”

The Bucks boycotted their August 26 game against the Orlando Magic to show solidarity with Jacob Blake and the Black Lives Matter movement. The Magic followed their lead and the Oklahoma City Thunder, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Lakers and Portland Trail Blazers also voted to postpone their games later on in the day to meet about the ongoing situation.

On August 23, Jacob Blake — a Black man — was shot in the back by Kenosha, Wisconsin police after he tried to break up what was described as “a domestic incident.” The event was captured on an onlooker’s phone and showed police arriving at the scene, 29-year-old Blake returning to his car and opening the door before getting shot multiple times by police. Blake is currently recovering in the hospital and is believed to be paralyzed.

As Mother Jones explains, the NBA teams’ action is “specifically, … a wildcat strike: a work stoppage without union approval.” Historically, wildcat strikes were utilized in the 20th century by Black workers and other union staff seeking immediate action against unjust management.

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