CHARLOTTE, N.C. — NBA legend Michael Jordan who has been criticized in the past for not speaking out on racial issues has issued a statement on the death of George Floyd.
In a story that appeared on ESPN.COM, the Charlotte Hornets owner said in the statement, "I am deeply saddened, truly pained and plain angry, I stand with those who are calling out the ingrained racism and violence toward people of color in our country. We have had enough."
The ESPN story wrote about the many others involved in professional and collegiate sports speaking out against racial injustice in the wake of Floyd's death at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer who has since been charged with third degree murder. Three other officers stood by and watched and have been fired from their jobs but not charged with any crimes.
NBA Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul Jabbar wrote an OP ED in the LA Times Saturday with his thoughts about the protests across the country. Toronto Raptors president Masai Ujiri also took to print writing in the Toronto Globe and Mail about Floyd's death and an experience he had with authorities.
Alabama's football coach and athletic director, Nick Saban and Greg Byrne each issued statements with Saban saying now is the time to choose, "kindness, tolerance, understanding, empathy, and [love]."
Arizona football coach Kevin Sumlin, New York Mets first basemen Pete Alonso, LA Clippers coach Doc Rivers and Phoenix Suns coach Monty Williams were among others who also spoke out about Floyd's death.
"We have allowed too many tragedies to pass in vain," Rivers said in a statement. "This isn't an African-American issue. This is a human issue. Our society must start getting comfortable with the uncomfortable conversation and do the right thing. Silence and inactivity are not acceptable anymore. Now is the time to speak."