Prior to Game 2 of the NBA Finals, coaches and players from the Golden State Warriors and Boston Celtics sported orange shirts with the words “End Gun Violence” on the front.
Coaches Steve Kerr of the Warriors and Ime Udoka of the Celtics both wore the orange shirts during their pregame press conferences on Sunday night. After 19 students and two teachers were murdered in a mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, earlier that day on May 24, Kerr gave a passionate and angry call for a change in gun regulations during a pregame news conference in Dallas ahead to Game 4 of the Western Conference finals.
“We feel very strongly as a league that it’s time for people to take notice,” Kerr said on Sunday. “And to take part in what should be a nationwide effort to limit the gun violence that’s out there. And there are ways to limit it. There are proven laws that are waiting to be passed, whether it’s background checks or what have you.
“There are things we can do that would not violate people’s Second Amendment rights, but would save lives. The idea behind wearing the shirts for both teams is to make people aware that they can contribute to different gun safety, gun violence prevention groups.”
“LEARN MORE” is written on the back of the shirts, along with the social media handles of organizations working to eliminate gun violence and support gun control legislation, including “@bradybuzz,” “@everytown,” “@giffordscourage,” “@livefreeusa,” and “@marchforourlives.”
Gregg Popovich, the head coach of the San Antonio Spurs, spoke at a Stand with Uvalde rally in San Antonio on Saturday, taking aim at government officials for failing to address gun violence.
Kerr tried to get people to go out vote and change the gun laws!
“The biggest thing I think is to vote,” said Kerr, whose father, Malcolm, was shot and killed in a terrorist attack in 1984 when he was president of the American University in Beirut. “What I understand is that a lot of congressional races that are out there, despite the fact that the majority of people in this country want gun safety measures put in place, a lot of those races are decided by people who aren’t so much for any kind of gun safety measures. And so people got to vote, and if you feel strongly about saving lives and possibly even someone in your own family, get out and vote.
“That’s the only way to convince the people we need to convince to start implementing gun safety regulation prevention laws, things that we can do to help.”
Udoka also shared his thoughts on against the gun violence during their Eastern Conference finals.
“We play a game that if you win, you’re elated and you feel great about it,” Udoka said on Sunday. “You lose, you’re devastated for the moment but it’s not life and death, you still go on. The awareness is about things that continue to happen in our communities. They are devastated and their families are devastated and we kind of go on with our normal life and business. Just continue to keep those thoughts in mind and those people are struggling.
“It continues to happen. And awareness and changes need to be made and we are all on the same page as far as that.”