When LeBron James was asked about President Donald Trump calling NBA players kneeling during the national anthem “disgraceful” and saying that no one has done more for the Black community than him in an appearance on Fox and Friends on Wednesday, James chuckled.
“You trying to make me laugh right now?” James asked after the Lakers’ 105-86 loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday. “I appreciate that.”
James went on to say that Trump can go ahead and stop watching games.
“I really don’t think the basketball community are sad about losing his viewership, him viewing the game. And that’s all I got to say,” James said. “I don’t want to, I’m not going to get into a [discussion], because I already know where this could go, where it could lead to for tomorrow for me. I’m not going to get into it.”
In a phone appearance on the weekday Fox News show on Wednesday, Trump criticized the fact that the majority of players have kneeled during the national anthem to protest systemic racism during the NBA restart in Walt Disney World near Orlando.
“When I see people kneeling during the playing and disrespecting our flag and national anthem, what I do personally is turn off the game,” Trump said.
“I think it’s disgraceful. We work with [the NBA], we worked with them very hard trying to get open. I was pushing for them to get open. Then I see everybody kneeling during the anthem. That’s not acceptable to me. When I see them kneeling during the game, I just turn off the game. I have no interest in the game. Let me tell you this, plenty of other people out there, too.”
Trump went on to address Black Lives Matter, saying he’s done more for the cause than anyone, with one “possible exception.”
“Black Lives Matter,” Trump said. “Nobody has done better for our Black community than me. Nobody. With the possible exception of Abraham Lincoln; it’s true. Criminal justice reform, opportunity zones, best employment numbers in history. Again, nobody has done for the black community — by far. I’ll give the one exception: Abraham Lincoln.”
James added that the presidential election is only a few months away.
“I hope everyone, no m