The LA Clippers played and won a basketball game on Wednesday night, defeating the Golden State Warriors by a final tally of 108-101. But before and after the contest took place, it was clear that something bigger was weighing on the players' minds.
Earlier Wednesday afternoon, before both the Clippers and Warriors decided to kneel during the playing of the national anthem, chaos broke out in Washington, D.C., as rioters broke into the U.S. Capitol building.
All 11 of the league's scheduled games went on as planned, but there were a few Clippers players who wouldn't have been opposed to shutting the league down for the day.
"It's two different worlds that we live in, and that was clear as day," Paul George said after the game. "The respect for colored people, there is none. It's the times we live in. It's very unfortunate... I would have been all for the league shutting down today to kind of just bring light to what's really going on in the world."
George wasn't alone in this frame of mind — Marcus Morris, who made his 2020-21 season debut on Wednesday night — said he didn't believe kneeling was a significant enough action. Like George, he also believed that the team should not have played.
Morris clarified that not playing wasn't something either team considered collectively, but more of his personal opinion on the matter.
Several other demonstrations took place around the NBA in response to the afternoon's events. After briefly walking off the floor before tip-off, the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics issued a statement on their decision to play. They, too, kneeled during the playing of the national anthem before tip-off. Elsewhere, the Milwaukee Bucks and Detroit Pistons took a knee on the court immediately after tip-off.