Sports brands Nike and Under Armour have joined the wave of support for NBA players who have decided to boycott games in protest of the police shooting of Jacob Blake, an unarmed Black man, in Wisconsin. The boycott began when the Milwaukee Bucks refused to play Game 5 of their playoff series, prompting the league to postpone several other games in solidarity. This movement has since extended to other leagues, including the Women’s National Basketball Association, Major League Baseball, and Major League Soccer.

Both Nike and Under Armour have come forward to express their solidarity with the athletes who are participating in the boycott. Under Armour, in conjunction with actor Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, announced the postponement of a new sneaker collaboration to show their support for those demanding societal change. Nike, through a statement, expressed its backing of NBA and WNBA players, as well as athletes across the sports community, in response to the shooting of Jacob Blake.

The protest has been sparked by the shooting of Jacob Blake, who was shot seven times in the back by a white police officer. This incident is unfortunately a part of a larger trend of unarmed Black individuals being killed by law enforcement and others in the United States. Prominent NBA stars such as LeBron James and Steph Curry, who have endorsement deals with Nike and Under Armour respectively, have been vocal in their support for the protests.

Other sports brands have also shown their support for the activism. Adidas tweeted a message of solidarity with players and coaches calling for justice, emphasizing that black lives matter. Additionally, Gatorade, a popular sports beverage brand, retweeted a statement from the Milwaukee Bucks, underscoring that the movement goes beyond sports and affirming the importance of black lives.

The boycott initiated by NBA players has brought significant attention to the issues of racial injustice and police brutality in the United States. It serves as a poignant reminder that athletes possess a powerful platform for advocating social change. By standing in solidarity with the protesting athletes, sports brands like Nike and Under Armour are aligning themselves with the fight against racial injustice and demonstrating their dedication to fostering societal change.

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Under Armour postpones sneaker collaboration in support of societal change
LeBron James and other NBA stars support boycott in protest of Jacob Blake shooting