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Kenny Smith Walks Off 'Inside the NBA' Broadcast in Solidarity With Players

As the NBA postponed Wednesday's slate of playoff games following the protest from the Milwaukee Bucks, the Inside the NBA crew quickly shifted gears to fill the time slot and discuss the developing situation.


During the broadcast, Kenny Smith stood up from the desk and left the studio in support of the players.

"For me, I think the biggest thing now is to kind of—as a Black man, as a former player—I think it’s best for me to support the players and just not be here tonight," Smith said before removing his microphone and walking off.

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Smith's decision drew support from around NBA circles, including from Hall of Famer and 11-time champion Bill Russell:

The Bucks decided ahead of Wednesday's Game 5 against the Orlando Magic to not take the court. Shortly after the team's decision, the league postponed the two other playoff games scheduled for Wednesday.

The decisions has created a larger discussion about the future of the NBA playoffs. On Tuesday night, the Celtics and Raptors talked about sitting out Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals, currently scheduled for Thursday. All players still in the Orlando bubble will join a meeting Wednesday night to discuss how to proceed, per SI's Chris Mannix.