Barack Obama Praises Zion, Giannis, Kevin Love, More for Donating to NBA Workers

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Mike Chiari Jeff Chiu/Associated Press @mikechiari Twitter Logo Featured Columnist

Former United States President Barack Obama took to Twitter on Saturday to praise several NBA players for the aid they are providing during the NBA’s season suspension due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Obama specifically mentioned Kevin Love of the Cleveland Cavaliers, Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks, Zion Williamson of the New Orleans Pelicans, Blake Griffin of the Detroit Pistons and Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors:

Each of the aforementioned players has pledged to donate money to cover the salaries of arena workers who are paid an hourly wage during the NBA’s hiatus.

Love and Griffin have both committed to donating $100,000 to the workers at their respective arenas, while Giannis tweeted that he is donating $100,000 to workers at the Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee as well:

Zion took to Instagram to announce that he will pay the salaries of workers at the Smoothie King Center in New Orleans for the next 30 days, which is at least how long the NBA season will be paused.

Curry is among the Warriors players, coaches and owners who have pledged to contribute to a $1 million fund that will be used to pay employees at the Chase Center in San Francisco:

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban also announced this week that he was implementing a plan to ensure that the Mavs’ hourly workers would be paid during the NBA work stoppage.

The NBA shut down operations this week after Utah Jazz players Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell tested positive for COVID-19. While it isn’t known exactly how long the suspension will last, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said it will likely last at least 30 days on TNT on Thursday (h/t ESPN).

Silver added that the NBA will use the next month to discuss the probability of resuming the season at some point and how it will be done if it is determined that the 2019-20 season can continue.