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President Donald Trump criticized the "highly political" National Basketball Association and mocked the NBA's low television ratings in a tweet on Tuesday.
Trump said the ratings are low because sports fans are tired of millionaire athletes mixing politics with sports.
"People are tired of watching the highly political @NBA. Basketball ratings are WAY down, and they won't be coming back. I hope football and baseball are watching and learning because the same thing will be happening to them. Stand tall for our Country and our Flag!!!"
NBA players boycotted 2 games to protest the police shooting of a Black man in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
But their anti-racism protests have rubbed sports fans the wrong way. According to The Athletic, network television ratings for the playoffs plunged 45% and 20% on ESPN.
Trump tweeted that he was heading to Kenosha Tuesday morning, where he plans to meet with Jacob Blake's family members, according to the White House.
Blake, 29, was shot 7 times in the back by a Kenosha police officer, and is paralyzed from the waist down.
Twitter suspended the account of a woman who said she was the aunt of Blake's girlfriend.
"Soph" tweeted: "Jacob raped my niece. The cops were called because he came back to her house, took her keys, and he's not supposed to be there."
When a Twitter user noted Blake should not have been shot in the back 7 times, Soph responded, "Should have been 50 times for what he did to my niece. but hopefully he survives so we can put him in jail."
Liberals claimed her tweets were fake. But she later confirmed she wrote the tweets.
Twitter users dragged Trump for his divisive tweets during ongoing Black Lives Matter protests in Democratic cities around the country.
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WNBA players protested on Wednesday by wearing custom made T-shirts with 7 faux bullet holes on the back, representing the number of times Jacob Blake was shot on Sunday in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
Blake, who is Black, was shot by a white police officer who was attempting to arrest Blake on an outstanding warrant for domestic assault and sex crimes against two minor girls. Blake, 29, survived his injuries but he was paralyzed from the waist down and he will wear a colostomy bag for the rest of his life.
The Washington Mystics lined up at center court on Wednesday in Palmetto, Florida to display their white T-shirts with a letter of Blake's name on the front to spell out "Jacob Blake." They embraced one another before kneeling to reveal the back of their shirts.
The Mystics boycotted their game against the Atlanta Dream Wednesday night before taking to the court to protest.
"We wanted everybody to feel like they were supported," said Ariel Atkins, a guard for the Washington Mystics. "Understanding that this just isn't about basketball. We aren't just basketball players and just because we are basketball players, that's our only platform. We need to understand that when most of us go home, most of us are Black."
The WNBA announced the remaining two games on the schedule were postponed following the news that the NBA boycotted their games on Wednesday and Thursday. The NBA playoff schedule is expected to resume on Friday night at the NBA bubble in Orlando, Florida.
The boycotts -- for a man who was wanted for molesting two teenage girls -- rubbed NBA fans the wrong way. Fans say they are boycotting the playoffs, even though TV ratings for the playoffs were already low.
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The Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers are so emotionally drained over the shooting of an unarmed Black man in Kenosha, Wisconsin that they voted to boycott the remainder of the NBA playoffs.
According to reports, the Lakers and Clippers were the only teams to take such drastic action after Jacob Blake was shot 7 times in the back.
The Athletic's Shams Charania reported that the other teams voted to continue the playoffs. ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski noted, "The Clippers and Lakers voting on perhaps not continuing with the season was considered more of a polling, than a final vote, sources tell ESPN. The resumption of the playoffs remains still up in the air."
NBA insider David Aldridge tweeted, "Told the players’ meeting ended "ugly," per a source, with uncertainty about what will happen tomorrow. The union will be present at the special Board of Governors meeting, per a source." It appears that the games slated for Thursday will be postponed as well. "Discussions on continuing season will extend into tomorrow, sources tell ESPN, but appears unlikely the three playoff games on Thursday will be played. "Everyone is still too emotional," one high-ranking source tells ESPN. "There needs to be more time to come together on this," tweeted Woj.
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The NBA unveiled a Black Lives Matter logo on the court at the NBA "bubble" facility at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida.
The NBA's season is set to restart on July 30, with all players quarantined inside the bubble away from their families and friends. The NBA season was suspended on March 11 after two players tested positive for the coronavirus.
The official @NBA Twitter account shared photos and videos of the logo painted in black letters on the court.
ESPN reporter Malika Andrews posted photos of the player's bench that shows seats spaced evenly 6 feet apart.
The bench spacing made no sense to NBA fans.
"I'm all for precautions but what is the point of socially distanced bench when they’re playing hard and physically on each other for 2 hours and all being tested daily?" tweeted one user.
Another user wrote: "What's the point of spacing out bench chairs if it's a contact sport on the court?"
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Houston Rockets teammates James Harden (left) and Russell Westbrook both tested positive for the COVID-19 virus.
On Monday, Westbrook announced his positive test result on social media. Later that day, Elite Media reported that Harden had also tested positive.
Westbrook and Harden say they have no symptoms and they feel well. The majority of people with COVID-19 experience no symptoms or mild symptoms.
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Both players are expected to join their teammates at the NBA bubble in Orlando, Florida next week.
When they arrive in Orlando they will be quarantined until both players test negative twice.
Most of the team and staff have already arrived at the facility to begin workouts for the restart of the NBA season which was canceled amid the coronavirus outbreak in the US.
They are likely to miss the first game against Dallas.
On Monday, the NBA announced two other players tested positive. Both players are in 14-day quarantine away from the bubble.
The NBA is using smart technology to keep players safe when the league returns from a 3-month coronavirus hiatus in July.
NBA players will wear a "smart ring" that detects symptoms of COVID-19 up to three days in advance.
According to CNBC, players will wear the new "Oura Smart Ring" that is capable of detecting COVID-19 symptoms up to 3 days in advance with 90% accuracy.
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Wearing the ring is not mandatory. Some players, including Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving, have suggested they may not play when the NBA returns in July.
The ring can monitor body temperature, respiratory rate, and heart rate, according to the manufacturer.
The Oura Ring was originally designed as a sleep tracker, but Oura Health, the company that manufactures the ring, soon find out the metrics could help detect coronavirus symptoms by monitoring the body temperature and other metrics.
According to a study by the University of California, San Francisco,2,000 medical workers wore the Oura Ring and completed daily surveys.
The study's objective was to monitor "the onset of symptoms such as fever, cough, and fatigue, which can characterize COVID-19," according to the UCSF.
The study's results were incomplete by the time the Oura Rings were purchased by the NBA.
West Virginia Rockefeller Neuroscience Institute conducted a similar study that found the Oura Ring was 90% accurate in predicting COVID-19.
But the study was carried out in conjunction with Oura Health, which raised the suspicion of a conflict of interest.
The Oura Ring is on sale for $299 on the company website and Amazon.com.
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LeBron James was criticized on Twitter by ESPN journo Jason Whitaker for saying Black men are hunted in America "everyday/everytime".
James reacted angrily to the graphic video that shows Ahmaud Arbery's fatal shooting in Brunswick, Georgia on Feb. 23.
"We're literally hunted EVERYDAY/EVERYTIME we step foot outside the comfort of our homes! Can’t even go for a damn jog man! Like WTF man are you kidding me?!?!?!?!?!? No man fr ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!!!! I’m sorry Ahmaud(Rest In Paradise) and my prayers and blessings sent to the....."
Whitlock tweeted that James's response was "not helpful", "Twitter trolling" and "shit stirring."
"This isn't helpful. It's twitter trolling. It's using this man's tragedy to build a brand as more outspoken than Michael Jordan. There are all kinds of ways to draw attention to this tragedy. Suggesting that we are hunted everyday/every time is just shit-stirring."
Former NBA star Matt Barnes defended James, tweeting: "You always got some shit to say.. wtf are you doing, besides coonin?"
Arbery, 25, was shot and killed by Travis McMichael, 34, who, along with his father, former cop Greg McMichael, 64, pursued the former high school football player through an upscale majority white neighborhood.
The McMichaels would later say they believed Arbery was burglarizing homes in the neighborhood.
A grand jury will decide whether to charge the McMichaels with murder. There have been no arrests.
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Utah Jazz stars Donovan Mitchell, Rudy Gobert and the rest of the Utah Jazz staff have been cleared of the coronavirus by the state's health department.
The team received the good news on Friday. Neither player was hospitalized, though Gobert said he briefly lost his sense of taste and smell.
Mitchell took to his Instagram page to share the happy news with his followers. Even though he is cleared and he can't pass the virus on to others, he said he will stay home to ease the fears of the public.
The NBA cancelled the rest of the season after Gobert tested positive. Mitchell tested positive the next day, while the rest of the Jazz players and staff tested negative.
According to the USA Today, Oklahoma City health officials took 58 tests kits to Utah's Vivant Center to test the players and staff on site because the health department considered it a "public health decision."
Other NBA players who tested positive include 2 unidentified Lakers players, as well as Brooklyn Nets star Kevin Durant, Detroit Pistons forward Christian Wood, Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart, 3 unidentified Philadelphia 76ers players and 3 unidentified Nets players. The Denver Nuggets also reported one member of their organization tested positive.
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ESPN's sports reporter Doris Burke has tested positive for the coronavirus that causes Covid-19.
Burke, 54, covers many of ESPN's live basketball broadcasts including the NBA and WNBA playoffs. She has been with the network since 1991.
While chatting on Adrian Wojnarowski's podcast, Burke revealed she was tested because she has struggled with health problems recently.
Burke warned people to take the virus seriously and to comply with social distancing recommendations.
Burke is the highest profile NBA sports personality to be diagnosed with the disease. She joins 2 unidentified Laker players, as well as Brooklyn Nets star Kevin Durant, Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert of the Utah Jazz, Detroit Pistons forward Christian Wood, Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart, and 3 unidentified Nets players.
The NBA canceled its season after Gobert, 27, was the first player to test positive. All of the players have since recovered from the virus.
Covid-19 causes no symptoms or mild flu-like symptoms in healthy adults who don't smoke.
Photo by NGRE / BACKGRID
Drake is self-isolating in his spacious Toronto mansion after partying with Brooklyn Nets star Kevin Durant before Durant tested positive for the coronavirus.
Drake and Durant partied with their boys at West Hollywood celebrity hotspot Nice Guy Lounge on March 11.
The Nets were in town to play the Los Angeles Lakers. Durant, who has a torn Achilles tendon, watched the game from the bench.
After the game, Drake posted a photo of his night out with the 6 ft 10 inch forward.
Drake flew home to Toronto before Durant announced he tested positive for the virus.
The 33-year-old "Hotline Bling" rapper posted a video from his home basketball court. He captioned the video, "My life for the next however long."
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, whose wife tested positive, shut down the country's borders with the United States.
A total of four Nets players tested positive for the virus. Covid-19 causes no symptoms or mild symptoms in healthy people under age 50.
The coronavirus causes severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and potentially fatal pneumonia among the elderly population, particularly those with weak immunity, chronic illnesses such as AIDS, COPD and other respiratory-related problems.