NBA MVP and Golden State Warriors star Stephen Curry applauded San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick's decision to protest during the playing of the national anthem, he tells CNBC.
“I love that. I love that there's freedom of speech and he can stand for what he believes in,” Curry said. “There's going to be people that agree with him and there's going to be people that disagree with him, which is what I think our country stands for. Hopefully that'll drive the conversation to bettering the equal rights and treatment of African-Americans and people of color. I applaud him for taking a stand. Hopefully the conversation is about what his message was and not the fact of 'Is he going to stand or is he going to sit for the national anthem?' The conversation was started and will continue.”
Kaepernick has decided not to stand for the national anthem during the preseason in protest of racial inequalities and injustices taking place in America, including police-related violence.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said that he does not necessarily agree with Kaepernick's protest but acknowledges his right to do so.
Curry is not the first athlete outside of football to offer support for Kaepernick. USWNT player Megan Rapinoe kneeled during the playing of the national anthem before a NWSL game on Friday night.
Kaepernick currently has the best-selling jersey in the NFL and plans to donate his proceeds to local communities.
The 49ers will open the season on Monday night against the Los Angeles Rams.