CANTON, Mass. — For a 20-year-old kid, Jaylen Brown has a lot on his mind.
The Celtics forward obviously is thinking about how he’ll progress on the court during his second season in Boston. But Brown also is taking a leadership role off the court, particularly as it relates to President Donald Trump’s recent comments directed at NBA and NFL players.
Brown said Monday at Celtics Media Day he recently reached out to teammates about discussing Trump’s remarks this weekend, and about potentially organizing some sort of action in response to the president.
“I think our voices are stronger together than individually,” Brown said. “So, I think we’ll open up a discussion about that, and maybe do something as a team, etc., or just at least open up a dialog about it. The reality is, there are problems in this country, and they’re not going to be fixed overnight. I just (want to) open up a discussion and keep raising awareness, and also, having some type of action about it.”
Brown said he ran his idea by Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge, who told him he’s “all for that.”
President Trump recently pulled Stephen Curry’s invitation to the White House and was critical of the Golden State Warriors guard for considering not going. He also attacked NFL players in a series of comments and tweets this weekend, calling for owners to fire or suspend those who protest during “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
Brown heard Trump’s words, and he strongly disagreed with them.
“I talked to Danny Ainge today, and he’s all for that, and I respect him for that, just having some type of purpose, some type of action behind your methods.
“I think sports is highly influential, and I think what’s going on in football, they’re having the freedom to express their first amendment right,” Brown said. “I think that is something that should be considered and understood.
“The president has made some comments, and he’s came at players and teams in the White House, etc. I think it’s unconstitutional to do that — to tell them that they don’t have the right to speak on whatever they feel like needs to be spoken on.”
Brown is the second-youngest player on a roster that features just four returning players. But his teammates, new Celtic Kyrie Irving included, appear to have no problem with him taking the lead on discussing social issues.
“I can’t wait to dive more into a discussion with Jaylen,” Irving said Monday at media day. “I know he feels strongly about a few issues, as well. When we get a chance to meet as a group and discuss all those things — whether you see it or not, it will be discussed — I’m looking forward to it.”
Thumbnail photo via Tom Szczerbowski/USA TODAY Sports Images
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