Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press
As the reigning NBA champion Golden State Warriors continue to weigh the choice of whether or not to be honored by President Donald Trump at the White House, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver does think teams should go if they are invited.
In an interview conducted by Portland Trail Blazers star C.J. McCollum for the Players Tribune, Silver said his opinion would be for a team to attend the White House to be honored by the president, but he respects each individual’s choice:
“I definitely don’t think it should be a league decision. I don’t think we should be directing teams or players to go to the White House. It’s my view that if invited, our teams should go to the White House. Regardless of people’s personal political views, I think that these institutions are bigger than any individual politician or any individual elected official.
“And it concerns me that something like going to the White House after winning a championship—something that’s been a great tradition—would become one that is partisan.
“I will say, though, even though I think that teams should make decisions as organizations, that I would also respect an individual player’s decision not to go.”
There hasn’t been a formal invite from the White House to the Warriors that’s been made public since the team defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers for the NBA championship in Game 5 on June 12.
Warriors head coach Steve Kerr told Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury News on June 21 that he would want the players to accept a potential invitation out of respect for the office while acknowledging “many of the players” have been offended by Trump’s actions and rhetoric.
Since Trump was sworn in as President of the United States, he has held a formal ceremony honoring the New England Patriots for winning Super Bowl 51 and hosted some members of the 2016 World Series champion Chicago Cubs during their trip to Washington D.C. for a series against the Nationals in June.