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Racism Towards Players of Asian Descent in the NBA

Clarissa Poston

Posted on February 27, 2021 17:21

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Recent racism against Jeremy Lin and Rui Hachimura has sparked interest in the overall depth of racism in the NBA.

Jeremy Lin, a former NBA point guard and current guard for the Santa Cruz Warriors, is one of the most recent examples of blatant racism found within the NBA. Although Lin doesn’t currently reside on an NBA team, he plays in NBA’s G League, which is considered the NBA’s minor league of professional basketball. Lin is one of the only Asian-Americans in the world of the NBA, making his experience with racism on court very personal.

In a recent article posted by ESPN, Lin recounts being called “coronavirus” while on court. Lin is choosing to avoid naming the name-caller, as he doesn’t want this person to be “torn down” or scrutinized. Lin also avoided stating when this occurred, though one would assume it happened relatively recently, seeing as the Coronavirus made its appearance a little over a year ago.

The G League has begun investigating Lin’s accusation, though nothing has come from it thus far. Seeing as Lin is a relatively outspoken person when it comes to racism due to the Coronavirus, I’m glad to know that the G League is attempting to solve at least one of the issues he has faced.

Another NBA player, Rui Hachimura, has experienced racism through professional commentary. Hachimura is a Japanese player for the Washington Wizards and plays as a power forward. He also plays as a forward on the men’s national basketball team in Japan. One example of this commentary can be found in a video (at 2:57) where, after dunking off of an alley-oop, commentators can be heard saying “Konichiwa” and “Arigatou” in what appears to be a good-hearted manner; however, fans were not happy with the commentary, as it came off as insensitive.

Similarly, another video (at 2:30) shows Hachimura assisting one of his teammates before commentators are heard saying “Konichiwa” once again. It seems as though this term is used as a celebration for Hachimura; however, I’m confident that commentators could find a more appropriate phrase to use.

Although these examples are more-so concerned with players of Asian descent in the NBA, they do not begin to scratch the surface of the NBA’s issues of racism. Unfortunately, these issues are extremely prevalent, and they are consistently overlooked. Racism has continuously been a major issue in the United States, and, sadly, it can be found in every corner of our lives. It’s about time that we do something about it.

Clarissa Poston

Posted on February 27, 2021 17:21

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Source: Forbes

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