LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – The National Basketball Association reiterated the league’s policy on playing the American national anthem Wednesday after reports of Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban refusing to do so prior to games.
In a terse statement, NBA Chief Communications Officer Mike Bass said: “With NBA teams now in the process of welcoming fans back into their arenas, all teams will play the national anthem in keeping with longstanding league policy.”READ MORE: Cold Weather Alert Issued For Antelope Valley, Later In Week For Mountains
The statement came hours after Cuban said he decided before the season not to have the national anthem played before the team’s home games.READ MORE: 1 Killed, Another Injured In Glassell Park Shooting; Authorities Searching For Suspect
Cuban didn’t initially elaborate on his decision not to play the anthem, saying nobody had noticed.
He later wrote in a tweet that was subsequently deleted: “The National Anthem Police in this country are out of control. If you want to complain, complain to your boss and ask why they don’t play the National Anthem every day before you start work.”
The decision is believed to be the first instance of a U.S. pro sports team striking the anthem from the pregame.MORE NEWS: 3 Pop-Up Vaccination Sites To Open In Northeast San Fernando Valley
Throughout the first several days of last season, players and coaches from each team – including Lakers stars LeBron James and Anthony Davis – have taken to kneeling during the anthem, continuing the protest started by former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick in 2017.