The ongoing protests against racism and for social justice continue to ripple through the country in the wake of George Floyd’s murder. They’ve effected nearly every facet of American life including sports. The Dallas Mavericks joined the chorus of solidarity with the protesters with their strongest statement on the ongoing events yet.
Their initial statement, released Sunday, read, “History goes through phases. Phases in Restoring (justice), Rebuilding (communities), and Rebounding (as people). Rebounding takes a team effort and we will rebound together.” For lack of a better word, it was cutesy, and didn’t strike a proper tone. On Tuesday, they got serious.
“Sadly, this tragedy is only the most recent in a litany of injustices that have threatened and too many times taken the lives of Black men and women, and plagued the Black community,” the new statement reads in part. “Enough is enough. Black lives matter.”
About an hour after the Mavericks released their message, which set a proper tone, Dirk Nowitzki took to Twitter to express his own feelings. Nowitzki’s wife, Jessica, is Swedish but of Kenyan descent. So, the events unfolding across the nation resonate with his family.
“I fear for my children’s future,” he says. “Families have felt this way for generations. We need change now!”
Earlier that day, Nowitzki and several current members of the Mavericks — head coach Rick Carlisle, Tim Hardaway Jr., Maxi Kleber — were seen in Dallas’ Deep Ellum neighborhood. They were there helping clean up and repair damage caused Saturday night after protests turned violent.
Sunday evening, before Dallas enacted a curfew for the central parts of the city, Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, Dwight Powell, Jalen Brunson, Justin Jackson, and Kleber attended a vigil for George Floyd held in front of the Dallas Police Department headquarters south of downtown.
With all the efforts that the Mavericks put into the community — from building basketball courts, to holding basketball camps for undeserved youth, and everything they’ve contributed during the coronavirus pandemic — it’s good to see the team get their messaging right.
George Floyd’s murder started a cascade that spread throughout the country. The ramifications of what is happening now and what comes out of the protests will echo for generations. The closing of the Mavericks’ revised statement is a sentiment that resonates with everyone, in the streets and in their homes, who are demanding a better future.
“We want to see justice served for the Floyd family, and are committed to taking action that will create real and long-term change in our community and around the world. Our action begins now.”