Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James has revealed that he will keep his name on the back of his jersey rather than replace it with a social justice message. The NBA has allowed players to replace their names on the back of their jerseys with a social justice message and several players intend to do so.
The NBA's official list of approved social justice messages is as follows: Black Lives Matter, Say Their Names, Vote, I Can't Breathe, Justice, Peace, Equality, Freedom, Enough, Power to the People, Justice Now, Say Her Name, Sí Se Puede (Yes We Can), Liberation, See Us, Hear Us, Respect Us, Love Us, Listen, Listen to Us, Stand Up, Ally, Anti-Racist, I Am A Man, Speak Up, How Many More, Group Economics, Education Reform and Mentor.
The NBA season has been suspended since March 11 due to the coronavirus pandemic but the league is planning to finish the season in a bubble at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando. "I commend anyone that decides to put something on the back of their jersey," James said, per ESPN's Dave McMenamin.
"It's just something that didn't seriously resonate with my mission, with my goal. I would have loved to have a say so on what would have went on the back of my jersey. I had a couple things in mind but I wasn't part of that process and that's OK."
Anthony Davis to follow
Seven-time Laker All Star Davis will also be keeping his name on the back of his jersey when the NBA season restarts in Orlando. "I think the name Davis is something that I try to represent every time I try to step on the floor, my family," Davis said during a video conference call with reporters Sunday, as quoted on ESPN.
But Davis admitted he gave the idea a good thought. "I didn't know what to decide: Should I have a social justice message or should I have my last name there? I just think my last name is something that is very important to me," Davis said.
"Also social justice as well. But just holding my family name and representing the name on the back to go through this process and my name and people who've been with me through my entire career to help me get to this point. While still kind of bringing up things that we can do for social injustice."