Donald Trump rescinded the Golden State Warriors’ invitation to the White House after Stephen Curry said he didn’t want to take part in the traditional post-championship Oval Office visit.
“Going to the White House is considered a great honor for a championship team,” Trump tweeted Saturday morning. “Stephen Curry is hesitating, therefore invitation is withdrawn!”
Trump’s tweet came just days after the Warriors said they’d hold a training camp meeting to decide, as a group, whether to visit the White House.
When Curry was asked Friday at the Warriors’ Media Day whether he personally wanted to take part in the tradition, the two-time MVP responded, “I don’t want to go. That’s kind of the nucleus of my belief… (But) it’s not just me going to the White House. If it was, this would be a pretty short conversation.”
Curry elaborated (via USA Today) that skipping the White House visit would mean “that we don’t stand for basically what our President has – the things that he’s said and the things that he hasn’t said in the right times, that we won’t stand for it. And by acting and not going, hopefully that will inspire some change when it comes to what we tolerate in this country and what is accepted and what we turn a blind eye to. It’s not just the act of not going there. There are things you have to do on the back end to actually push that message into motion.”
Warriors coach Steve Kerr, NBA Finals MVP Kevin Durant, Andre Iguodala and Draymond Green each previously expressed reluctance about visiting Trump’s White House following their 2017 NBA Championship win.
LeBron James lashed out at Trump in his own tweet Saturday, “U bum @StephenCurry30 already said he ain’t going! So therefore ain’t no invite. Going to White House was a great honor until you showed up!”
In the past few weeks, Trump has taken repeated aim at black athletes and sports personalities, with NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick and ESPN host Jemele Hill among the targets. “Hey @StephenCurry30, welcome to the club bro,” Hill tweeted Saturday morning.
In addition to now beefing with two of the NBA’s most popular players, Trump also ignited a feud with the entire NFL during an Alabama rally Friday by suggesting that football is too soft now and saying that players who stage National Anthem protests should be fired.
In an unexpected move, the NFL released a statement criticizing Trump’s “lack of respect,” while numerous NFL players turned to social media to slam the president.
“The behavior of the President is unacceptable and needs to be addressed. If you do not Condemn this divisive Rhetoric you are Condoning it,” the Seattle Seahawks’ Richard Sherman wrote, while the Detroit Lions’ Eric Ebron added, “Does anyone tell trump to stick to politics, like they tell us to stick to sports? Smh.”
Buffalo Bills running back LeSean McCoy said bluntly, “It’s really sad man … our president is [an] asshole.”