It’s official, the NBA has pulled out of Charlotte for the 2017 NBA All-Star Game over North Carolina’s controversial HB2 Law.
The NBA just announced it will relocate the 2017 All-Star Game from Charlotte, hoping to reschedule for 2019 pic.twitter.com/Q1RhFsDI3l
— Harry Lyles Jr. (@harrylylesjr) July 21, 2016
The news was first reported by Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo. The NBA announced it hopes to reschedule the All-Star game in Charlotte in 2019 if resolution is found with the new law. This isn’t the first time games were pulled from Charlotte. In 1958 the league moved games due to Jim Crow law.
Hornets Chairman Michael Jordan released a statement which stated the organization understood the decision and are pleased to be given a potential second chance in 2019:
“We understand the NBA’s decision and the challenges around holding the NBA All-Star Game in Charlotte this season. There was an exhaustive effort from all parties to keep the event in Charlotte, and we are disappointed we were unable to do so. With that said, we are pleased that the NBA opened the door for Charlotte to host All-Star Weekend again as soon as an opportunity was available in 2019. We want to thank the City of Charlotte and the business community for their backing throughout this entire process, starting with the initial bid. We are confident that they will be just as supportive and enthusiastic for the 2019 NBA All-Star Game.”
Sacramento Kings owner Vivek Ranadive released a statement in support of the NBA’s decision:
“The NBA has long stood for inclusion and respect, and the Sacramento Kings are proud to be a part of that legacy,” said Kings owner and chairman Vivek Ranadivé. “On and off the court we have a diverse team representing different countries, races, religions, ages and sexual orientations. In basketball and in Silicon Valley, we share a similar philosophy – it does not matter who you are, your religious beliefs, your sexual orientation, or the color of your skin – everyone is welcome in our family. All that matters is that you’ve got game.”
“ESPN has demonstrated a strong commitment to inclusion. The NBA’s decision is one which we fully support, emphatically illustrating that the league clearly stands for inclusion as well.”
It’s unfortunate fans in Charlotte will be losing the game, but kudos to the NBA for taking a stand and following through on the removal. The NBA proved they won’t stand for discrimination. It’s a worthy protest. Adam Silver continues to do an absolutely terrific job as NBA commissioner.