While everyone was focused on whether or not players were protesting during the national anthem, a performer slipped under the radar and changed the conversation. Denasia Lawrence, the National Anthem singer, knelt during her performance before the start of an NBA preseason game in Miami, Florida.
What really got crowds talking was that under her unbuttoned jacket she wore a "Black Lives Matter" t-shirt. She idolizes Colin Kaepernick, the San Francisco 49ers quarterback that began the kneeling protest, and decided to literally get her voice in the conversation. She released an official statement regarding her decision to kneel via her Twitter account.
With the NBA regular season just days away, many have pondered how the players will react to the anthem and whether they will have similar protests to their NFL counterparts. Many players, such as Carmelo Anthony, LeBron James and Chris Paul have been very outspoken about the need for change in the country. This preseason, teams have displayed unity by linking arms on multiple occasions. No players have individually knelt because the NBA has a rule that asks for all players and coaches to stand during the anthem.
The Commissioner of the NBA, Adam Silver, expressed his feelings on the recent protesting in sports on Friday in New York, according to ESPN.
"It would be my hope that they would continue to stand for the national anthem. I think that is the appropriate thing to do." - Adam Silver
Denasia Lawrence has received a lot of feedback on social media about her performance, both positive and negative. With this game changer, it will be interesting to see going forward how non-violent protests will occur and be handled during the NBA regular season.
Lead Image Credit: 4 minutes ago via YouTube