The NBA playoffs are in limbo after six teams refused to play their games Wednesday in response to the police-involved shooting of Jacob Blake. The Milwaukee Bucks began the protest when they didn’t take the floor for Game 5 of their first-round Eastern Conference playoff series against the Orlando Magic Wednesday at the ESPN Wide World of Sports in Orlando, Fla.
The NBA’s postponements sparked a sportswide wave of sitouts. Three WNBA games, three MLB bouts, five MLS clashes and a series of tennis matches also were postponed in response to Blake’s shooting.
The NBA’s board of governors and players will have separate meetings to decide how to proceed with the playoffs inside the Walt Disney World Resort. Sources say that most teams polled Wednesday said they want to proceed with the postseason, while the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers were among the teams that voted against continuing.
The NBA and NHL are the only leagues in the United States with active postseasons. Three Stanley Cup playoff games were played as scheduled on Wednesday in Canada, where the NHL has used Toronto and Edmonton as bubble hub cities as a coronavirus pandemic safety precaution.