When the New England Patriots visited President Trump at the White House recently, many players skipped the trip because they disagreed with one (or all) of Trump’s policies or actions.
And when the NBA Finals wraps up, we wouldn’t be surprised if some players from the Warriors, or Cavs, elect to skip the celebratory trip to the White House.
Warriors coach Steve Kerr has spoken out against Trump’s proposed Muslim ban and LeBron has previously mentioned that he’s unsure he’d visit Trump should the opportunity arise.
Kobe Bryant was asked by Ben Strauss of Politico what he would do if he won a championship.
“I probably would go,” he told Strauss. “That visit is more than how you feel about the current administration. It’s about the guys next to you, about the flag, about the kids out there who look up to you and the United States. But, honestly, it’s a tough call.”
Kobe also spoke about how he visited President Obama back in 2015 after he retired just to pick Barack’s brain, and the impact that the former President had on athletes across all sports.
Check out his comments about Barack Obama below, via Politico.
“In sports, you get better by working in the gym,” Bryant noted. “I wanted to know how he got better, from managing his schedule to what he reads. And because he gets sports, and we can talk about that, too, it makes it easier to have that connection.”
“Obama didn’t inspire someone like Colin Kaepernick (the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback who knelt during the national anthem last season). But he did help athletes progress beyond just asking questions or just being angry, and asking why something is the way it is. Like what’s the constitutional reason behind something and what can be changed.”
“He made locker rooms more politically aware. Conversations changed. Obviously, now with the violence we’re seeing across the country, that’s something athletes are understanding more and more. He was rare. We all miss him to a certain extent.”