The most vocal league in sports is speaking out about the Derek Chauvin trial, basically telling its franchises to be ready for a fallout after the verdict.
Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported on Sunday that the NBA is instructing teams to ‘be vigilant’ about not only the outcome of the trial, but what could come after: possible protests and civil unrest in various cities that host franchises and have games scheduled for next week, with the playoffs closing in. The league may even postpone games as a result.
Chauvin is on trial in Minneapolis for the death of George Floyd, a trial that is expected to host final arguments Monday.
The ex-Minneapolis police officer faces charges of murder and both second- and third-degree manslaughter.
He is accused of holding his knee on Floyd’s neck for over nine minutes in May 2020. Chauvin has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Wojnarowski says that the NBA league office is doing its due diligence to prepare, should games may have to be nixed for a few nights in the upcoming week.
The Minnesota Timberwolves, which would seem would be most impacted by the outcome of the trial, will fortunately be out west for the next four games. So the league won’t have to move games out of Minneapolis, where the trial is being held.
Last week, a game between the Wolves and Brooklyn Nets was postponed after a policewoman shot unarmed black man, Daunte Wright, during a traffic stop in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, a suburb of Minneapolis.