The Golden State Warriors just won the NBA Finals over the Cleveland Cavaliers, but don’t expect a team visit to the White House anytime soon. Initial reports reveal that the Warriors reportedly unanimously chose not to visit President Donald Trump.
While not yet confirmed, the news is somewhat expected, as the Warriors aren’t exactly Trump fans. In an interview with Sports Illustrated, coach Steve Kerr called President Trump a “blowhard,” saying that he is “ill-suited” for the presidency.
“I think being a bully doesn’t work today, or at least it doesn’t work coaching. The modern coach has to be much more communicative, flexible, aware, conscientious, all those things. Frankly, I think it’s why Trump couldn’t be more ill-suited to be president, because he’s a blowhard,” Kerr said, via USA Today. “You don’t see some of the qualities you talk about, the resilience, the ability to communicate, the compassion. None of that.”
“Has anyone ever thought that Donald Trump was a great leader?” Kerr went on to ask.
Warriors guard Steph Curry shared a similar sentiment. Following Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank’s description of the president as a “real asset,” Curry added his two cents. “I agree with that description, if you remove the ‘et,'” Curry said, according to NBC Sports.
It’s unlikely any of the NBA championship-contending teams would’ve met with President Trump this season. Cleveland Cavaliers star LeBron James was a vocal supporter of Hillary Clinton during the 2016 election, and San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich has been a harsh critic of Trump.
Regardless, this wouldn’t be the first time players have passed up on visiting the president. After winning Super Bowl LI, only 34 New England Patriots players met with President Trump, and plenty of players passed on opportunities to meet with President Obama and President George W. Bush.
But if the Golden State Warriors were to decide not to meet President Trump, the team would send a signal that its entire organization does not approve of the administration. It’s a bold message, one that other professional teams could follow.
Update June 13, 4:16pm: In a statement on Tuesday, the Warriors claimed that it had not yet come to a decision about visiting the White House, if such an offer were to be presented. “We have not received an invitation to the White House, but will make those decisions when and if necessary.” Team owner Joe Lacob offered a similar sentiment shortly before the statement was released during an interview with ESPN’s First Take. “I can’t believe we’re getting this question already,” Lacob said. “But honestly, that’s something we’ll worry about at the time. That’s a long time from now.”
Editor’s note: This article has been updated for clarity.
H/T Josh Brown