NBA Commissioner Adam Silver Press Conference
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Adam Silver Says NBA Players Should Embrace A White House Visit Under Trump's Presidency

‘That’s a lost opportunity"

Ever since Adam Silver stepped into the role of NBA commissioner in 2014, he has remained vocal on social and racial issues. Although he's strict on his players, Silver allows them to have the freedom to express their feelings and views through their actions on and off the court.

Recently, he expressed to The Undefeated his stance on athletes who take controversial positions on racial issues, and how he has handled these instances as NBA commissioner.

“There have forever in this league been questions about social justice, about issues of diversity, respect, inclusion, about economic opportunities, about racial injustice,” Silver said. “All those things, all bundled together, that might lead someone to want to protest. What we did in [the Kaepernick] case — the players association together with the league — was to speak directly to our players about those issues and deal with issues we felt we can have a direct impact on. And that meant putting together forums — many, by the way, that had begun before any protest occurred in the NFL.”

One of the most recent racial issues that occurred within the NBA involved songstress Sevyn Streeter, who was told she couldn't perform the national anthem at the Philadelphia 76ers home game because of her shirt's social justice message.

“On the Philadelphia anthem thing, you put yourself in the team’s shoes: You have a real-time situation where – not the senior management of the team – has to make a real-time decision," he said. "I think it’s easy to look back in retrospect and say this anthem singer should have been free to express herself with a ‘We Matter’ T-shirt. But I don’t want to suggest these were easy decisions."

Following the election of Donald Trump, a few NBA players have expressed their thoughts on declining an invitation to visit the White House. To this revelation, Silver thinks that thought process would actually hinder the player.

“To me, if a player were to choose not to go to the White House, whether they were choosing not to go to the current White House or a future White House, my response would be: ‘That’s a lost opportunity,’” Silver said. “Because that’s an opportunity that most citizens who have a political point of view would kill for — the opportunity to directly tell the president of the United States how they feel about an issue."

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In the event you thought Serena Williams was going to do the tennis equivalent of "shut up and dribble" the 37-year-old athlete told her naysayers not to hold their breath.

Thirty-nine time Grand Slam champion Billie Jean King recently commented on Williams' conduct off the tennis court and said: "Quite frankly if I were Serena, I would give up being a celebrity for a year and a half if she wants to win titles."

"I don't know what she wants. No more Met Galas. Just stop all this insanity because she is trying to be everything,” King said.

"She’s got business, a baby, she’s trying to help gender equity, particularly for women of color. It makes it much harder. I would like her to put everything else aside because she's got people working on those things.”

Following Williams 6-2, 6-2 defeat against Simona Halep, a reporter asked Williams how she felt about King's comments, and Williams boldly said she won't stop advocating for the disenfranchised anytime soon.

“The day I stop fighting for equality and for people that look like you and me will be the day I'm in my grave.”

Sounds like Ms. Williams will be fighting both on and off the court for a little while longer.

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Lamar Odom Kicked Out Of BIG3 Basketball League

Lamar Odom was ready to start his professional basketball career back up, however, he will have to postpone that dream.

According to reports, the former Lakers star will no longer be playing in the BIG3 League. Per TMZ, Odom is one of four players who the league believes aren't ready to play just yet. The other players who have been deactivated from the Ice Cube-founded league are Baron Davis, Jermaine O'Neal and Bonzi Wells.

"Odom was nervous about being embarrassed on the court because he wasn't prepared to compete with his fellow ex-NBA hoopers ... and there was little hope it would work out," reports the site. "As the league stated in the news release ... the org wanted to "maximize competition," so it was an easy decision to part ways with the Lakers champ."

"You know, as a league we want players that are actually playing," Ice Cube said to TMZ about the dismissal of the players from the league. The site writes, "[Cube] added that players who aren't playing or who 'can't play' or have 'health issues' that prevent them from playing really don't have any business being on a BIG3 roster."

The two-time NBA champ hadn't played basketball in several years due to health and wellness concerns, brought on after a near-death experience at a Nevada brothel in 2015. He's reportedly hoping to be back and better than ever to play next year, but there is still no word on whether he will be invited to play again.

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Gymnast Katelyn Ohashi References Nicki Minaj, Cardi B In ESPYs Acceptance Speech

UCLA gymnast Katelyn Ohashi won the hearts of millions after her show-stopping floor routine, which earned her (yet another) Perfect 10. Her entertaining display of athleticism and showmanship earned her an ESPY Award for "Best Play," and during her acceptance speech on Wednesday night (Jul. 11), she called for the end of women being pit against each other in sports and the media.

"The objectification of our bodies is making me sick, pinning women sports against each other, acting as if they can't co-exist," she stated. Her entire acceptance speech flowed effortlessly, as she rhymed throughout the entire thing. "It's like saying Chedda Da Connect can't go with flick of da wrist, or what about Nicki Minaj or Cardi B? Two thriving females rappers everyone should see."

As it's been drawn out, the two New York-bred rappers have had a longstanding beef that is hopefully, officially squashed. While many brands and other entertainers seem to keep bringing up the rappers' past, Ohashi seems to use the past to call for unity among women.

Check out her speech below.

Speak on it, @katelyn_ohashi 👏 pic.twitter.com/uydZMV4tSq

— ESPN (@espn) July 11, 2019

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