After a four-month layoff, the Los Angeles Lakers returned to the court with a preseason game on Thursday at Disney World.
LeBron James began his first postgame news conference, following a 108-104 loss to the Dallas Mavericks, with a call familiar to many who have been covering the NBA in the bubble: “Justice for Breonna Taylor.”
LeBron played tonight with Breonna Taylor on his shoes and in mind. pic.twitter.com/K4TGqMYc9M
— Tim Reynolds (@ByTimReynolds) July 24, 2020
“First of all, I want to continue to shed light on justice for Breonna Taylor and to her family and everything that’s going on with that situation,” James said.
James followed up that answer with a call for the officers involved to be arrested.
Lakers’ LeBron James on Breonna Taylor: “We want the cops arrested.” pic.twitter.com/TmMSYgoJQi
— Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) July 24, 2020
“We want the cops arrested who committed that crime,” James said. “As one of the leaders of this league, I want her family to know, and I want the state of Kentucky to know that we feel for her and we want justice. That’s what it’s all about. What’s right is right and what’s wrong is wrong.”
This is hardly surprising to hear from James, who has remained outspoken in the wake of George Floyd’s killing and subsequent protests. Less than a week ago, the Lakers star posted an Instagram message to Taylor, who was shot in her bed in March by plainclothes Louisville police officers who were raiding her apartment via a no-knock warrant. A gunfight ensued after her boyfriend opened fire on the intruders.
While the four police officers involved in George Floyd’s killing have all been fired and criminally charged, only one of the three officers involved in Taylor’s killing has been fired and none have been charged.
Many NBA and WNBA players have taken up support for Taylor following her death, with some even devoting their entire press availability to answers about Taylor. James’ teammate Kyle Kuzma called for the media to ask more questions about social injustice on Wednesday, and it’s hard to see this push going away as the season begins.
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