Kevin Durant supports NFL players in anti-Donald Trump stance

By @saihoops on
NBA Free Agency 2017, Kevin Durant, Andre Iguodala, David West
Nov 18, 2016; Boston, MA, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant (35), Golden State Warriors forward David West (3) and Golden State Warriors forward Andre Iguodala (9) congratulate each other during the first half against the Boston Celtics at TD Garden. USA TODAY Sports / Winslow Townson

Kevin Durant, the reigning NBA Finals MVP, has unequivocally backed his peers in the NFL for taking a stance against embattled US President Donald Trump. After Durant and the Golden State Warriors got disinvited to the White House, several NBA stars such as LeBron James led a verbal attack against Trump.

The NFL took a collective stance against Trump for his controversial comments about players protesting the national anthem. After Trump's comments were strongly condemned by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, players, club owners and executives joined American athletes in their ongoing battle. 

On Friday, Trump encouraged fans to walk out of stadiums, besides asking NFL owners to "fire" players that lodged protests against the US national anthem. "Wouldn't you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, 'Get that son of a b---- off the field right now. Out. He's fired! He's fired,'" Trump, the most polarising president in recent memory, said at a rally in Huntsville, Alabama.

Kevin Durant: 'Sports is what brings us all together'

After a Warriors training session on Sunday, Durant opened up about the importance of sports and the role it plays in uniting the country. "Sports is the United States. Sports is what brings us all together. A couple hours out of the day, you see people from different walks of life coming together and celebrating a sport. That's what it's all about.

"Obviously, wins and losses and who's the best, that stuff is fine, but the bigger picture in sports, it just brings us all together, and you get to enjoy each other for a couple hours. And I think our NFL players are doing a great job of sending a great message, and we stand behind them as athletes, and we support them as well," Durant, whose comments were echoed by teammate Andre Iguodala, said.

The NFL has joined the NBA in protesting Trump's comments. While New York Giants owners John Mara and Steve Tisch called Trump's comments "inappropriate, offensive and divisive," Niners boss Jed York called them "callous" and "contradictory to what this great country stands for." 

During the pre-game routines, several NFL players wore T-shirts that read "#IMWITHKAP" to show solidarity with free agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick. Kaepernick began the process of kneeling (during the national anthem) to protest rising police brutality against African Americans in the U.S. 

Iguodala thanked the NFL for taking a strong stance. "It just raises awareness. They got away from that. They tried to make it about a different issue. Those that weren't in favour of what Kap and what other guys were taking a stand for, but he had a message behind it, and they didn't want to hear that message because it was so true and hit so close to home. But that's what it's all about. But like I said before, when it's thrown in your face so many times and so blatantly, it comes to a point when you have to stop walking backward."