NBA teams are voting with their wallets, even though the 2016 U.S. election cycle is over.
The Dallas Mavericks, Memphis Grizzlies and Milwaukee Bucks have stopped staying at hotels bearing the name of Donald Trump, ESPN’s Marc Stein and Zach Lowe reported Tuesday, citing NBA sources. The Mavs, Grizzlies and Bucks have done so to avoid implicit association with the president-elect.
The teams no longer will frequent The Trump SoHo in New York and The Trump International Tower and Hotel in Chicago. Instead, they’ll stay at hotels that have no affiliation with Trump when they visit the New York Knicks, Brooklyn Nets and Chicago Bulls.
The Grizzlies and Mavericks decided in the offseason against staying at properties that Trump’s company owns or is affiliated with. ESPN said the Bucks had “complications (in October) when they tried to make an 11th-hour cancellation” at the Trump hotel in Chicago.
Bucks co-owner Marc Lasry and Mavericks owner Mark Cuban both supported Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, whom Trump defeated last week in the general election. It’s unclear whether Lasry’s and Cuban’s personal political leanings drove their teams’ decisions to stop using Trump hotels.
The sources add another Eastern Conference team will stop using Trump-branded hotels next season.
Seven other NBA teams will stay at Trump hotels this season, but ESPN declinded to identify them, citing privacy.
Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez decided in June not to stay at Trump’s hotel in Chicago with the rest of his teammates. He declined to say why, but many assumed the first-generation Mexican-American slugger took umbrage with Trump’s nativist campaign rhetoric.
It’s almost like the election isn’t over.
Thumbnail photo via Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports Images