NBA mandates all teams must play national anthem

The NBA on Wednesday announced that all teams will now be required to play the national anthem before games.

"With NBA teams now in the process of welcoming fans back into their arenas, all teams will play the national anthem in keeping with longstanding league policy," NBA Chief Communications Officer Mike Base said in a statement.

The announcement comes one day Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban announced that the team would not play the national anthem at home games anymore.

Cuban reportedly made the decision to not play the anthem after speaking with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver. His decision has drawn the ire of well-known conservative figures such as Megyn Kelly and Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas).

The announcement does not appear to prohibit players from kneeling during the national anthem.

NBA players knelt during the anthem after the season returned following a pause caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

During a January game between the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics, most of the players decided to take a knee during the national anthem. The game took place after civil unrest following the decision by Kenosha, Wis., prosecutors to not charge the officer involved in the shooting of Jacob Blake.

"If they were taking a knee and they were being respectful, I'd be proud of them," Cuban said at the time, supporting the players' decision. "Hopefully I'd join them."

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